Saturday started off with an 8:10am pickup from the school. The bus came and picked up the American teachers and a couple of the older CMS students who were helping out. As we drove towards camp then we continued to pick up kids and co-workers. After arriving, everyone piled out of the buses and stacked all their bags into the main room. Then while the kids and college students headed across the street to an open lot to play "get to know you" games, Lucy and I started setting up for lunch. We split it into two areas. Outside, with the stove, would be the pasta, sauce, mashed potatoes, and fresh fruit stations. Inside, with the oven, would be the cookie and garlic bread stations. Lucy, Chuck, and some of the other moms headed up the outdoor station with me just popping over every now and again. Lily, Mark, and I led inside. Lily took charge of organizing the students to make garlic bread, leaving Mark and I to split the remainder of the students into two groups (headed up by the CMS students) to make cookies. The kids seemed to have fun mixing up the dough and then eating some chocolate chips and tasting the dough. Mark shared that one of his sisters is a huge fan of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream. Yum! Considering it was the first time many of the students had ever worked in a kitchen and made food, I thought lunch turned out pretty well. After lunch we walked a bit to a nearby park and the college students took over. Each one was in charge of a different "station." The kids got a chance to go to several of the stations where they'd play games and talk. Around 4pm we started heading back to the building we'd be sleeping in. For dinner we had chicken, fish, rice, and veggies. Once dinner had been finished and the area cleaned up, the Americans took over. The kids sat down on the floor in the main room. Mark had more or less planned it, but all of us were involved. We started with some games: High/Low (a card game where students have to guess if the next card drawn will be higher or lower than the current card), and then What Do You See (a picture is shown for various amounts of time and students are asked what they see with the idea that the longer the picture is shown students can build off of what they originally saw). The kids really enjoyed the second game. Mark shared some tips for learning English in fun ways. The students were given a 10 min. respite, then we sang some Friday Night Bible Study songs. Mark played guitar and I led the actions. Some of the girls just cracked up over the actions to "God is Big" and "Saved by Grace." We also performed a skit (the SIN Skit). After the skit Mark had some questions for the students and some Bible verses. We handed out the colored, Bible verse bracelets. Nine to eleven p.m. then was free time.
We spent the night sleeping on the floor. Girls had the third floor and boys were on the fourth floor. There were two rooms on each floor along with a bathroom. Thankfully, the rooms were air-conditioned and there were fans to keep the air moving. If anything, I was cold. Being a minimalist when it comes to packing, I didn't actually bring a pillow, I just used my backpack. And although I would wake up to change positions every so often, I slept surprisingly well. I was just that tired. Hahaha.
Breakfast was served at 7:30am Sunday morning. Since we had some free time between breakfast and the next session (another American led English time), I went for a short walk. We were in a very rural area, so I went through rice paddies and groves of various fruit trees. On one tree I observed a family of snails traveling up the trunk. The mama snail carrying two little baby snails on her back as they went. I also stopped to take in the rice paddies. There is more to their ecosystem than one usually takes in from a glance. Snails were slowly moving across the mud, their antennas feeling the way in front of them. There's also a strange, oval, bubble gum pink thing that grows on the edge of some of the rice plants. I still have no idea what it is, but it's an interesting color. I used the fireworks being shot off at a nearby temple to guide me back to the building where we were staying. The Americans led another English session. We performed the Love Ball skit and sang a few more songs. Then we headed to the church next door for the Easter service. It was the first service I've been to that was all in Taiwanese. It was a very cool experience! After church, we ate lunch, and then headed out to hike. Unfortunately, before reaching our destination it started to rain, so we ended up just putzing around the old city. Then we headed to a different church for our "closing." Prizes were awarded and there was a slide show of pictures from the weekend.
Then it was back to Chiayi.
|Get to Know You games...|
|Lily heading up making garlic bread.|
|Mixing the cookie dough|
|Pasta in a wok!|
|All done and smelling great!|
|Of course, the best part of baking is the tasting. :)|
|Mash those potatoes!|
|One of the "team building" games. The students had to navigate their way across the mats.|
|Don't drop the ball!|
|Mark getting in on one of the games.|
"Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life." Omar Khayyam