I have my final farewell from Internado and Ixiamas folks last Thursday. Since most of the kids have left school and Internado at different times for the last 2 wks, I have been saying good bye for the last 2-3 weeks. Our dorm supervisor for the girls left about 3 weeks ago also.
Our oldest boy in the Internado, Miguel is having his high school graduation today in Ixiamas. I felt so bad to miss it, as I needed to be here in LaPaz to catch my flight on Monday.
We had our farewell dinner with all the kids,Â Internado staff and parents last Sunday.Some kids are left in the InternadoÂ this week for their make -up class and exams.
I will beÂ at SIFAT, Alabama from December 2nd to December 20th. It`s a long journey to get home to the Philippines. I hope to be in the Philippines just before Christmas Day.
I have had many, manyÂ good -byes in the last 10 years ofÂ my life, still I am not good with it. I haveÂ improve though. It`sÂ still alwaysÂ emotional.Â
I hope to share some of my reflections with my time here in Bolivia and Internado in my nextÂ posting.
Hasta la vista,
HereÂ´s a letter I posted to the SIFAT staff last weekend. I want to thank the Lord for those who have been praying for me andÂ with me for the Internado folks. Also I thank the Lord asÂ once again has shown that He is a God of impossibilities.
About same time last year, when the opportunity to go to Bolivia came up, I had no imagination how in the world I could get to Bolivia from my far away country. While praying to go to Bolivia or not, I also did research on how to get a visa and exhaust all possibilities of flight routes. For about 4 – 5 months I tried to find a route from Philippines to Bolivia. I thought it was almost impossible. I did not know that time of any Filipinos going to Bolivia.
However, theÂ Lord made a way!Â To God be the Glory! HereÂ´sÂ my letter to SIFAT staff just to share with you. I wrote this last week, I only have a week now in Bolivia.Â (Courtney, thanks for your letter!Its an encouragment to know that there people reading my blog :))
Hola SIFAT staff,
Can you believe I only got 2 weeks in Bolivia, but only 1 week with the kids? School year ends by next weekend. And kids go back to their homes. It seems it was just yesterday, when I started researching for Bolivia. Around same time last year, when I was looking and researching on visa how to get to Bolivia, and praying same time how to get here. And now, my time is over.I canÂ´t explain all the mixed emotions going onÂ inside of me. I wish I could describe it better with words on how I am feeling right now. Of course, very sad to leave…I am excited though to see yall again, and anxious for what is next.
Just when I hit 5 weeks beforeÂ IÂ Â leave BoliviaI I almost checked out. IÂ started to think of things I will be doing next. I started thinking what I could be doing, and the things I hope I could do, or will do. Again, I forgot this main thing…here,Â now.Â
Here.Now. With due respect to the Learn and Serve folks, please excuse me Nate and Jamie for borrowing this title,”Here.Now”, just to share some reflection and thoughts as I leave Bolivia. “Here and Now” is a big lesson IÂ´m still learning (todavia) in my life.
Actually, few months prior to coming to SIFAT last year, I wrote in my journal an article on my reflection from my time in China, and the title is the same, “Here.Now”. So,Â I was surprised when I came to SIFAT and saw the theme of the Learn and Serve as the same.
I realized that one of my regrets or mistakes,or aÂ main lesson I should have learned long time ago, is to be “Here and Now”,Â Which means, to enjoy the moment.Â I had theÂ tendency to make myself busy with so many things, at the same time think and plan ahead or sometimes worry about the future,Â instead ofÂ enjoyingÂ the time being,Â for that particular time, for that particular place with theÂ very people I am with. I endedÂ up loosing theÂ joy of capturing the opportunity,Â the moment.Then, afterwards, I ended up wasting my time regretting what IÂ have lost. I was also guilty of wasting the time by complaining and whining instead ofÂ being “thankful” for what God has given me for that time.
One week, 7 days, and two weeks, 14 days. IÂ could still watch the orange -yellow sun that Â risesÂ above the trees infrontÂ Â of myÂ room Â when I wakeÂ up in the morning. I could still watch the colorful sky that turnsÂ yellow,Â withÂ pink,to purple asÂ the sunÂ goes downÂ behindÂ the hills at the back of myÂ andÂ balcony.
I could still see theÂ birds thatÂ fly around andÂ above the building. I could still watch the zillion of bright stars that dusted the sky on every pitch dark night.Â Â I could still enjoy playing and washing in the river.Â Â Â I could still enjoy my walk to and fro the town as I watch the little and big pigs on the road, with the chickens, and wild horses and cowsÂ roaming around the town.Â I could still play with Snicker,(the little black dog) and sometimes with Scott and Stronger (the other dogs of Internado).
And most of all, I could still be with the Internado kids, for now, here at this moment.
Right here, right now.
The Lord has taught me a lot of things while being here in Bolivia. HE has blessed me in everyway. I hope to share more next time.
HastaÂ la vista!
Hola de Ixiamas!Â Believe it or not, IÂ only have 3 weeks left here in Bolivia, and onlyÂ couple of weeks with the kids! I am having all kinds of mixed emotions.
The kids at the Internado finishes their school year by the 3rd week ofÂ November.Â I will be in the USA for 2-3 weeks in December to visit SIFAT, Â then back to the Philippines for Christmas time.Yeah, time flies! Â
Life Goes On in the Internado…
It’ Spring -Summer here in the tropics of Ixiamas. The weather is great at night and early mornings. And of course very warm on daytime.Â Only two more weeks left for the kids to be in school, and ItÂ´s more challenge for Rachel and the dorm parents with the kids as they become more restless, awaiting for their grand school vacation.Â The kids are also busy with their school tests and completing their school requirements.Â
Within the 6 month I have been, it seems to me that most of the kids have grown a inch taller, or maybe just my imagination. However, Snicker the used -to- be small pup has grown bigger for real. Scott the white-brown dog still chases the motorbikes, the pigs , chickens, and continues to pick up fight with the other dogs in town. He is now a mainstay on the road, and rarely visits Internado. Stronger the other dog, seem to support Scott more being on the road. The used to be three little pigs of Internado, are now two big fat pigs.
For about 2 weeks,Â we had a new member in Internado, a brown squirrel that kids held in a small cage and became their pet. Rachel being merciful, let go of the poor little creature, and sentÂ back to the mother nature. Construction of the new building has done a lot of progress. The rabbit house is all ready for the rabbits to come.
I continue to take kids in the Internet to learn this technology. The kids are enjoying learning to write emails to our past interns. I really appreciate the Auburn interns as they faithfully answer each email of the kids.
Anyway, would appreciate your prayers for all of us as we finish the year. I would like to have a meaningful time with the kids for these coming weeks.
God bless yall!
We have asked Practicum student Becky Forrest to let us publicly post the recaps e-mails to friends and family. Becky is an American and has just begun full-time missions after 29 years as an accountant. Through her posts, we hope you will understand a little more about what the Practicum is and what students are learning. Below is her most recent e-mail. Thanks for sharing with us, Becky!
Last week. Wow, I canâ€™t believe the last week of training is here. It is bittersweet. I look forward to returning home, but I will miss my new family I have made here so very much. All 16 of us have gotten so close, and we realize most of us will not meet again until we see the pearly gates. I have gotten very close to two of the Nigerians, and maybe one day I will get to visit with them. I plan to stay in touch with email. The internet is a great tool for keeping in touch. Friday night we have our graduation ceremony, and it will be very special for all of us.
One of the biggest lessons I have learned is we are all brothers and sisters in Christ and regardless of the color of our skin or the language we speak we are all Godâ€™s children.