Spotted in Manila, 2014

Friday, May 27, 2011

Guacamole every day. And some Mozart.

I don't think I'll be so happy with the food I'm eating ever again. Every morning, we eat breakfast at the only restaurant in San Juan, about a 3 minute walk from the convent. No matter what my breakfast is, whether it's chorizo in pita, friend plantains, or tostadas, there is guacamole. Fresh. Like, so fresh that I just saw the chef pick the avocado outside the window. My usual drink is orange juice mixed with soda water and about a cup of sugar. I can't believe how delicious every single thing I put in my mouth is.
We've been taking our instruments to the hospital every day. I feel pretty comfortable saying that I'm the first bassoonist to ever perform in Antigua, but I guess I could be wrong. The kids who are developed enough, see the bassoon and point and laugh. It's a reminder that it is indeed a ridiculous looking thing. I sit at it and practice so many hours on it, that I've forgotten just how strange it really is. I feel refreshed thanks to their reaction of laughter.
For those who aren't very far in their development, the children are split in half. One half being the kids who are inactive, unaware, and silent; the other half being those who are loud and not in control of their bodily movements. Unfortunately, both have in common that they are often orphans of teen moms and have cerebral palsy due to lack of sex education for these young women. However, a few of the children get regular visits from their parents who them very much, but do not have the financial means to support their mentally and physically ill child.
The team took turns splitting who would be performing for the ward and who would be walking around the ward interacting and playing with the children to engage them in the performance they were hearing. At one point, Matt, Caeli, Catie, and myself were performing a Mozart string quartet while Ian and Annalise danced among the kids. It was then that I noticed that the 2 groups of children had completely switched roles. The inactive, silent ones were dancing and singing along with our music, and the usually screaming, loud ones were silent and focused on our concert. I couldn't believe what was happening. Music really does have an impact on everyone. We passed out shakers to all of the kids and they shook them with smiles bigger than I've ever seen.
My usual breakfast and drink

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