Nothing like a little good, clean (extremely dirty) volunteer work to get you out of your funk when you're (me) sitting around feeling sorry for yourself. (myself)
Yesterday morning I shoved Max and Sam out the door for school (about 10 minutes too early), and grabbed half-awake, half-dressed Gabe and Gray, threw a bunch of stuff in a back pack, piled on a bunch of snow clothes, and rushed up to "Miss Janeen's" house. A very kind lady from church, Sister (Natalie) S. and friend Debbie, had offered to watch my two little ones, Janeen's two little ones, and Lyana's one little one so we could volunteer for the Red Cross doing clean-up for the day.
We left the kiddies at Janeen's and went to "The Mokuteki" on base. (Casual dining/auditorium/game room and current Red Cross base of operations.)
First we got briefed on what to do and what to expect:
"Be careful. Don't wander off alone. Be respectful of the Japanese. Don't step on rusty nails. Don't saw your hand off. Stay hydrated, but be aware there are no toilets to use..."
Stuff like that.
|I call him Tyler. YOU can call him Captain H.|
|Walking down the path to the beach.|
|Dropping of our backpacks at the Sea Wall.|
|Doesn't look so bad from afar...|
|Rose, Janeen, Lyana, and I|
|This thing was most effective at pulling the nets out.|
|Getting ready to reverse.|
|Heather, Rose, Janeen, Anna, Lyana|
|Arriving at the Pig Farm|
|What used to be a barn.|
|Believe it or not, this is serious progress!|
We only worked until about two but I was completely spent by the time I got home.
That night we had the H family for dinner as usual. Their days here are numbered so we've had them over every night for the past...week? Two weeks? I can't keep track of time any more. The last ?16? days have been the longest of my life. But we want to see them as much as possible before they head state-side.
When they left, I fell asleep on the couch. (I can't really remember much of the evening...maybe I fell asleep before they left? I hope not.) I do know that all night I had nightmares that I was back at the farm and we uncovered a buried cistern or cavern, opened it, and let out some horrible disease. And we were all standing around wondering if we'd already been exposed and if it was too late...yuck.
BUT, that wasn't so bad.
The worst part of the whole experience, was looking at the mess and knowing there are whole towns and cities down south that look like this. Not very far from where we are. And that what we do here is just a drop in the bucket.
This is all still so unbelievable to me.
The BEST part was feeling like I was doing something to help. Even if it was just a TINY something. (And believe me when I say I didn't have a self-centered thought or self-pitiying feeling all day. Nothing like seeing what people have lost to remind you of what you still have.)
SO! I will go again.
And I will add another drop to the bucket.
Now it's 2a.m. Sunday morning.
Time to say goodnight!