Tuesday, July 07, 2009

the chicken is in the pot

Four hours later we emerge from the hospital triumphant. The baby is perfectly fine and with everyone's help the birthing account has been created. They are ready for their delivery. My friends asked me to come with them along each step, the MD visit, the lab, the ultrasound and seeing that floating baby made my eyes float a bit too. Here, there and everywhere the beat of life goes on.

Our last stop was the cashier and I stood off to the side watching them hand over what is to them an enormous sum. I see the father's eyes glaze over a bit and he shakes his head. Babies, they are expensive I say and he nods. The chicken is in the pot, he replies and that makes me laugh. Indeed. We drive home and they are smiling now, the weight of so much has been lifted.

Much of the MD appointment was in Spanish and my limited skills only took me so far. I ask when she told them to come back and they said we come back on her due date, the 20th. I start to laugh and I tell them they very well might be coming back sooner, the baby will tell them when to go so dates don't matter so much anymore. The relief is palpable and as we drive up to their little house swarming as always with kids and chickens and dogs and family everyone there is smiling as they tell them about the day. Later on my friend and the baby's grandma comes over with some freshly baked johnnycakes and gives them to me. Thank you, she said. They were worried and now everything is going to be okay. I tell her I am thankful for them, for all they teach me every day and while I can't make a nice beans and rice or very good tortillas, I can't catch a parrot or scale a fish there are some things I can do and getting things organized is one of them. It takes a village she says without a hint of irony in her voice. And it does.

Speaking of villages, there are some of our own that have moved some serious mountains this week. Linking is problematic some days so I have to give a giant squeeze to Jenny and Sarah, Brie and Amy, these fabulous woman have arranged to donate all of the supplies for the upcoming village art class which starts in a two weeks. The postmaster shakes his head at the boxes and as he opens them he is curious about what it's for and I tell him. Friends from the US want to make sure kids here can learn art and he smiles and charges the lowest possible duty, a token at best of .50 per box. Because of you these kids will get to do things they have never done before and holy cow, that's pretty darn cool. Another chicken is in the pot.

I'm starting to come around to this place, the bugs and the heat and the rickety nature of most things aside I see it more deeply now and less romantically, we need so much less than we think and yet we still need some things and there is a balance of Western and Not Western that is might not be necessary but is valued a lot, like rice in a sifter, we can strain out the icky bits before cooking it on the stove and a pot of rice goes a long, long way.



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14 comments:

Jenny said...

A pot of rice, indeed. My husband saw many hungry days in his home country and rice was what got him through. Now we buy it in twenty pound bags and treat it with reverence. I see many similarities in your current way of life and his past.
Oh, and here's a giant squeeze back to you from the delicious boys and I. :)

Sagesse said...

I just started reading your blog last week and am SO enjoying it. Thank you for bringing a glimps to me of how some other parts of the world live. I've visited some of them but never lived the life.

Sarah

Madge said...

just spent a couple of days in el salvador and thought about you in your jungle, wishing i could visit.

felt my heart skip a beat when the grandmother said "it takes a village"

deb said...

You're making a difference woman.

Magpie said...

why do people catch parrots? to eat, to keep as pets?

good on you for organizing the birth business.

Beth Smith said...

I am so glad things are working out. Chicken is in the pot. Great saying

Amber said...

I think that organizing is a great skill. Really. You're making a difference for real.

And I'm just loving your insights. They're really making me think, and I'm so grateful to you for that.

Capital Mom said...

Glad to hear everything went well at the hospital. Can't wait to see what the kids create!

Janet said...

I was just catching up on your adventures, lifting rocks and organizing babies and bringing art to the shiny-eyed youth. You are good people, Jen.

flutter said...

welcome to the world, baby.

Kelly said...

So lovely to have that weight lifted...

Kyla said...

I thought I saw you at MY hospital last night. It wasn't you, but it made me miss you all the same.

Erratic said...

Glad I could help!

You are making such a difference down there. That village is lucky to have you and you them. :)

Sarah

Lara said...

We still need to talk about details with for the project w/my students and the art kids in your village. We still want to do it! Maybe in a few weeks?