Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Night We Went For a Walk.

We decided to go for a walk, my husband and I. Our travels in the coolness of the evening took us on the narrow trail next to the citrus tree, where the still ripening fruit was examined and the longing for some kind of ripe citrus was talked about and wished upon.

On down toward the gray school building, we went, circling around the looming structure, then between the large mango trees that sat near the water fountain, next to the cashew tree that twisted it’s way upward in front of the hospital. We walked down the dirt road, surrounded on both sides for a few minutes by towering cactus plants. The cacti gave way to banana trees and we paused for a moment to looked at the bunch of ripening bananas that hung on the nearest tree.

We continued on past the coconut palms, underneath which was found piles of thick green shells that had been cut away so that people could grasp the small circle of creamy white sweetness inside, past the he-hawing donkey that was tied by a withered old rope to a stake in the ground, past the field where the boys were playing football with bare feet and patched soccer ball, past the compound with the many children who all came running, exclaiming our names in excitement. Soon after we turned around and passed by it all again.

Our arrival home was met by the sound of the generator purring loudly and we walked around our house under the massive mango tree with the still green fruits clinging to it’s branches, to fill our water tank.

That task finished we noticed the goats out of their pasture. I ran inside for a bucket and after we shooed the bleating animals into the pen, we walked hand in hand across the now greening field to the orange tree in the middle. After cutting a stick from the small section of trees and using it to shake the outstretched branches until a bucket full of a ripe oranges laid about the ground, we scurried about filling the bucket.

We stopped at the other mission house on the way back home, offering from our freshly picked pile of oranges. Mary declined, saying she still had juice left from the last buckets they brought home. She then offered us some key limes. We gleefully accepted a bowl full of the tiny green fruit and after promising to bring back some of our grapefruit in exchange, we headed home.
There I quickly squeezed the limes and we both enjoyed several glasses of the tart refreshing limeade.

After dinner we heard the sound of footsteps on the front porch and after our questioning, "Kisa ou vle?" (What do you want?) The little voice answered, hopefully, "Mwen chwe football." (I play football.)

Now there are two boys battling to see who will win the current game of foose-ball while another picks at the guitar and another plays solitaire at the table. Oh, and we cannot forget the three year old younger brother curled up on the couch, fast asleep.

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