Friday, August 16, 2013
Learning culture and language is definitely not an 8-5 job. Although we are encourage/required to spend 40 hours (for Craig) and 20-30 hours (for me) a week studying...those hours definitely do not fall within your typical work hours. We often find that Saturday and Sunday can become our busiest Culture Experience days, while the weeks days are often full of our sessions with our language helpers and studying or filing.
Today is a perfect example of that...here were are Friday night (TGIF) the time where you are ready to put your comfy pants on, order a pizza, turn on the TV and just chill after a long week. But tonight we get the opportunity to experience something new. Something that happens only once a year. Tonight our neighborhood begins the Independence Day celebrations. Our meeting began at 7:30 (about) the women in the garage on chairs and the men in the driveway on chairs. Our usual monthly meeting things took place...which is often exchange of small amounts of money (.$50-$5) for various things within the community. Maybe the money is for neighborhood get togethers or to pay the garbage man...then we are given a small talk from the government. Usually along the lines of cancer related topics or obesity or something like that...then we wait more. At about 8:30 the ceremony began. Oh I forgot to mention that people usually dress in their traditional batik clothing for this but tonight they seemed EXTRA dressed up. I do have to be honest and say that I showed up in my batik shirt and capris and quickly found an excuse to go home and put on a long skirt. It is now almost 10 pm and I came home early for the festivities to put our WORN OUT children to bed. I think they were asleep within like 2 minutes...poor kiddos! My friend told me that it is common for this meeting to go very late into the night...perhaps even mid night to bring in the celebration. As I sit here I hear the fireworks being shot into the air..again! We just had about a two day break from the Idul Fitri fire works and now we have new ones :) Needless to say Craig will have plenty of "hours" of language and experience by the end of tonight.
And that leaves us at Friday night...what about a relaxing Saturday. Maybe time to mow the lawn and take a nap...HA! Tomorrow morning we start at 8 am taking the public transport to the city center. Tomorrow will be a parade for the Independence Day. We are told it could start between 9-10 ha ha! And also that tons of people will be there. Pray that H Boy does ok. Sometimes large crowds are NOT his favorite.
We are so thankful for all of these new opportunities. Just tonight as I sat beside a good friend "who called herself Stella's Indo Grandma" she told me so much about this new culture. Such a learning experience! I am so thankful! Yes it is not a 8-5 job...and some days it is just down right dirty, tiring, and I feel lost...but I am so thankful for each experience that we have. I am so encouraged by how much we are learning and growing...We are so blessed to be able to here and be part of what God is doing. And we are soo very thankful for everyone who supports us in the prayer and financial! We are CONTINUALLY amazed at God's work! Keep us in your prayers that we can stay focused and keep learning!!