I think this post got lost somewhere between Marulaon and my thoughtful (and busy!) friend, Ann, who keeps the blog up and running while we are away from the world of the internet.
Saturday, April 16
Market was absolutely amazing this morning. I try to explain just how much those fresh fruits and veggies mean to the health and stamina of our family. Our situation is unusual for most SITAG teams. Most village teams don't have the bounty that we experience twice a week.
Shortly after market, Hiva showed up to meet with Aaron under the house. I took down some tea and a ring cake (donut) I had just bought at market. They talked about the Lavukal translation for quite a while and arranged a quick paddle over to Karumulun to visit with Ezekiel. A few minutes after Hiva left, Leonard came by. He and Aaron arranged for the payment of some timber and the construction of a new set of steps leading up to our house. The old set is falling apart and beginning to be dangerous. The work should begin on Monday and Benjamin is supposed to be helping. Yipee! Boys began bringing timber and dropping it in front of our house while I hung out laundry.
Aaron and Hiva paddled over to visit with Ezekiel and to take some material over to his wife Janet as a thank you for all of the work she did on Aitum Ovovo. They had a great visit and discovered that there will be a church wedding (distinct from a custom ceremony) in Karumulun next Friday. Whenever there has been a wedding, we've always been in Honiara or America, so we're super excited about the opportunity to attend and observe. So Aaron's Saturday morning was filled with more “work” related activities than yesterday morning, but here it all runs together anyway.
After lunch, Sarah and I delivered our first batch of banana cake to our neighbors. The village continues to grow, so we have to get started fast if we want to make it all the way around the village with a plate of banana cake for each house. Then I walked down to see who was around and to check on the rest of the kids who were swimming. As I went down the hill from our house, I asked Naris about this yellow leaf Sylvester had told me about. You cook the leaf just like any leafy green, and it supposed to help a new mama make enough milk for her baby. This was a new story for both Naris and me, so I wonder if this is a custom from Makira, where Sylvester is from.
I walked along the shore and found my friend, Daisy. Her family was making lelenga (after all, it's the Saturday afternoon thing to do!). They were draining the extra liquid from their uvikola (cassava) by hanging it in a basket made from a coconut branch. Daisy has a new grandson who let me hold him while we chatted. He is cutie! Because he was born during the effects of El Nino, his uncle chose the name Elni for him.
After a good chat with Daisy, I kept walking along the shore and finally came around the end of our island where our kids were playing. Sarah was playing cards with some of the girls, and the younger three kids were swimming in the most beautiful swimming pool you can imagine: the ocean.
I'm grateful that the people in the Russells, particularly those who live here in Marulaon Village, allow us to live and work among them. I'm sure they don't always understand us or our ways. But God is using our time here to make us more and more like Him. Obviously, we want the Lavukaleve translation to move quickly and smoothly so our friends here can read God's Word in their own language and truly understand it.
I love listening to Aaron share about the translation team as they grapple with the concepts they are translating. He is finally getting to disciple and teach, strengths of my dear husband. But no matter how much work Aaron and the translators produce on paper, I think the bigger work is being done in each of our hearts as we're shaped by our time living and working here.