This is a blog for my Momma.. because she won’t stop nagging me about writing one. Don’t say I never did anything you asked Ma.
Going to try to get everything from February into this one blog. Shorter month, but it was packed with events. So, put your reading glasses on because this is going to be a bit long.
Saturday the 3rd to Monday the 5th: The team spent some time in Fogo (another island here). We ferried to the island. A 4 hour boat ride. Not a fan. We got there late Saturday night and went to an amazing pizza place. We left around 5:30 AM on Sunday morning to head to the volcano on the island. I am apparently extremely out of shape. 6.2 miles to the top of the volcano. Again, not a fan. I cried a few times, fell once or twice, thought about quitting about an hour in, but I survived the climb with only 2 legit breakdowns… could’ve been way worse. We ferried back Monday morning, which was also my birthday. Ashlyn, Hadassah, and Michelle treated me to take-out from our favorite Italian place. Oddly, I wasn’t sad about not being with my family on my birthday. It just felt like another day.
Tuesday the 13th to Wednesday the 14th: We had a huge youth lock-in here at the girls apartment. We had the lock-in because it was the holiday of Carnival here. Carnival is not a good holiday. It’s pretty much just a huge party. So, we had the lock-in to keep the youth away from the temptations of Carnival. There were around 60 of us here. It was wild. We played games, Isaac taught, and we all broke up into small groups. I spent most of the night helping in the kitchen. I think I washed dishes for two hours straight.. and wasn’t finished when I stopped. I enjoyed it though. I can handle cleaning and cooking better than I can handle the crowd. I was really excited that we had such a huge turnout and that all of our friends in the youth group were so excited to be here.
Wednesday the 14th: Valentine’s Day! But more importantly, Mana’s birthday!! We had our team group church at the boys’ apartment. The boys even cooked for all of us! We ate, had a message, and hung out.
We’re going to take Parents’ Week day by day:
Thursday the 15th: Thursday a lot of the parents started their journey to Cabo Verde! (Also, the 15th was Momma’s birthday!!!) Meanwhile, I was stressing because my parents just stress me out and I was anxious that something was going to go wrong or that they would forget something. I was almost sick to my stomach from stressing over it.
Friday the 16th: The parents arrived around lunchtime! At the airport, all the other students were super excited, but I was still stressed. That is until I caught sight of my parents. I took off running through the airport to them. Daddy said he wished a security guard would’ve tackled me, but this isn’t America. We took my parents things to the hotel and had lunch at the house. My parents had only been here for 3 hours, but it was time to take them to my discipleship. I had to remind them to watch their facial expressions because culture shock was hitting them quick. Everything here feels normal to me now, but having to see them experience some things for the first time reminded me of how shocked I’d been when I first got here. The house we go to could easily fit in our carport back home. My daddy was totally shocked.. he also was immediately questioning the safety of the neighborhood we were visiting. I wasn’t thinking any of the things my parents were. I was thinking that it was Friday afternoon and I’m going to my Bible study like I do every week.
Saturday the 17th: I took them walking to a light house here in the morning. Again, Daddy made comments about how the wooden and breaking stairs with no rails to the top wouldn’t have been allowed in America. Then we got the the top and went out where the iron railing is rusted off in places— Daddy again felt the need to comment how that would be against regulations in America. Update Daddy: this is Africa. Saturday afternoon, my parents, Ashlyn and I went snorkeling. We all enjoyed that a lot.
Sunday the 18th: We all went to church. I think my parents really enjoyed it. Luckily, someone translated for Pastor. I wish they wouldn’t have. I wanted my parents to also experience a church service where you don’t always understand whats going on. They didn’t need special treatment. That afternoon we all went to the interior. WE had a huge medical day. Madeline’s Stepdad and Mom worked extremely hard to see about 40 patients in about 5 hours. Anyone who knows me, knows my Momma drives me crazy trying to take pictures of everything. Well, joke was on her because she couldn’t take her phone out where she wanted here. It was for safety reasons— I didn’t feel like being robbed just because she feels like she needs a picture of eeevverrryything. (Love you, Ma.) She was not happy about not being able to take pictures whenever she wanted. And after years of Daddy taking her side and making us stop for pictures everywhere, he quickly saw that I was right about just not pulling your phones out here.
Monday the 19th: We all went to Terrafal (the most touristy beach on the island). I took my Eno hammock and accidentally slept through most of the day, but my parents still really enjoyed it. It was nice to just relax and be with them.
Tuesday the 20th: I took my parents to the first Pepe location I went to here (Terra Branca). They absolutely loved it. We somewhat had another medical day so it wasn’t a totally normal day. Daddy and I helped do breathing treatments and Momma held whatever baby she could get her hands on. I think one of Momma’s favorite things about Cabo Verde is that literally ANYONE will let you hold their baby. Strangers or friends, doesn’t matter, they’ll still give you their baby. Its wonderful. Then that evening, we were invited to house church/an engagement party at Titi’s (Hadassah and Michelle’s disciple). My parents really enjoyed that.. Daddy was concerned about not feeling safe, yet again. Welcome to life in Africa, its all okay dude.
Wednesday the 21st: My parents and I slept in and then went to the Sucapira. Sucapira is like a huge market that sells anything from slaughtered chickens/pigs to clothes to phones—pretty much everything. But it is a bit of a dark and smelly and sketchy place. I just weave in and out of the booths without a second thought. My parents on the others hand weren’t quite as used to it. Momma loved it, but she loves any shopping you can do for cheap. Daddy was on edge. We then walked up to Plateau (the downtown area of Praia). We went in some of the stores and got some souvenirs to send back home. That afternoon we went to Sao Francisco beach for a cook out and some baptisms!!! We had our church service around fire and Mr. Johnny gave us an encouraging word.
Thursday the 22nd: My parents accompanied me to what was my current Pepe in Achada Mato. I loved seeing my Daddy going insane from the craziness of the kids. He would previously tell me “it can’t be that bad. I worked with children that age for 20 years. And so on and so on.” He learned quick that I wasn’t over exaggerating. The kids aren’t bad at all, they are just kids.. that don’t speak your language or understand the Portuguese you speak. Momma and Daddy still loved it though. We went back to Sucapira and Plateau that afternoon to pick up a few things. We had ice cream in Plateau and went to an outdoor cafe where we had onion rings and fried eel. I went to a lot of the nicer restaurants here with my parents… I may have spoiled them a bit with that. Later that night, we had Special burgers for supper. I would kind of compare Special with Krystal’s. The burgers at Special are much better, but its probably one of the closest things we have to a fast food restaurant. We took it back to the hotel room and ate and just hung out for our last night together.
Friday the 23rd: had a teary eyed goodbye with my parents. I think Momma cried more than any of the other parents. Its okay that you’re so emotional Ma, but I wish the gene would’ve skipped me (kidding, love you). But once I got back to my apartment and took a nap, I was fine. Daddy recently said that while he was here some of the rougher areas or things made him ready to go home, but thats okay. Yall being here was exhausting. I loved it, but it was exhausting. Plus, it was nice to just get back to my normal schedule.
Happy February, y’all.