Friday was my first day with the big kids, or Montana kids as we call them. We call them the Montana kids because they live in a building we call the Montana House. The Montana House houses 3-5 year olds, but upon meeting these kids you would think they were 7 or 8. The Montana kids are some of the smartest kids I have ever met. They are bilingual and can translate for you. They know all of their numbers, addition, and subtraction. Some can even read! They feed themselves and clothe themselves and have an excellent memory. Additionally, they are wise and mature beyond their years. Looking at how self sufficient and smart these 3 and 4 year olds are makes me wonder how much we cripple our children capabilities in America. When driving through town, it is not uncommon to see 3-5 year olds walking to school half a mile away all by themselves. They will have their uniform and their backpack on and will be walking on the side of the road to school everyday. When i first saw it i was immediately scared for the kids because you would NEVER see such a thing in the United States. A four year old walking to school by himself? Child Protection Services would be there quicker than the neighborhood people could gossip about it. However, here it is just apart of the culture. They don’t have school buses and a lot of the parents don’t have cars. They don’t have time to walk their kid to school. Even so, i asked a few locals if anything ever happened to the children walking such a far way by themselves and she said accidents were so rare that she didn’t worry at all. What an amazing thing to have so much trust in your community. I think of America where our thought of any stranger is automatically that they are a rapist, kidnapper, or murderer. Granted, there are a lot of rapists, kidnappers, and murderers in America, but why is it such an issue there and not in other parts of the world?
We left for the field trip at 9:30 Friday morning. We were going to Shanga, a factory that hired disabled personnel to make blankets, bracelets, paintings and glass blowing designs.
It was actually a really cool place. They had trees, elephants, and other sculptures all made from glass bottles. The kids loved it and I saw the good it did for the community. They hired the disabled to give them jobs, and recycled used old glass bottles to makes beautiful things.
The employees have a variety of disabilities ranging from being deaf, to being blind, to being crippled, to having no hands. The work they are doing there is absolutely amazing.
When we got back to Neema the kids all went down for their naps. The afternoon was filled with more kids and more playing. The kids got go to Micheal and Dorris’ small corn plants and pick and shuck the corn. The corn doesn’t have the anti- pesticides we do so there were bugs all over them and when shucking sometimes the corn would be rotten and squishy underneath. Think my repulsion was pretty evident on my face because the nannies kept laughing at me. The kids had so much fun though and after we picked and shucked the car, Dorris cooked it and all the kids and babies who could ate the corn outside in the playground.
It was a blast to have everyone out on the playground. The crawlers, toddlers, and Montana kids were all out there playing together and eating corn. When all the playing was done, went down to the Montana house with the kids and we got ready for bed and watched Ice Age before turning in for the night.