Sunday, September 19, 2010

The children

The girls have had several forms of interaction with Domingo’s grand kids; Melanie and Daisy, playing soccer, watching movies, sharing cookies, playing Barbie dolls, Polly Pockets, dancing or just looking at each other and giggling. They have also interacted with the children in the towns of Salmonete and Bahia Honda. Many children, I mean many. The island has 800 people of which 200 are kids.

There have been many times where the local kids stared at Samantha and Trinidad as they recognized them as being foreigners and so different, but nothing like in the towns in here. There is a small feeling of celebrity when the kids come running to the dock to receive us and then they follow us every where we go. It is a feeling that increases my confidence to interact with them, but it becomes totally overwhelming to the girls. Typically, they want to get close and touch the girls’s hair, they are curious, they want to hear how they talk, and they want to make friends. The case was a little different in Salmonete, another town up the river, where the children gathered by the slide to watch every step Samantha and Trini took. They kept their distance. I didn’t want Samantha and Trinidad to feel intimidated and it was working well, Trini was even making the kids laugh. It was great until she tripped and fell. The laughs became evil in Trini’s perception, but the kids realized her sadness as the crying reached the higher decibels and they stopped. At that point I quit trying to blend in.

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