Our first day here at Nasu's house was filled with organizing our belongings, but ONLY after we had our walk with Milvia and stretches using poles and tubes. This occurred promptly at 7:00am DR time or 3:00am Oregon time - if anyone is counting.... (that surely gives us extra star points). Milvia is a drill sargeant and shows little mercy. Can you tell one of us is a little tired?
I was laughing all the time I was organizing, as Angel had stuck little post it notes in all my things, I still find them, several days later. I have them in a little pile.... I'm not sure what I'm going to create with them, but I'll think of something....
Nasu's kids, Nassuel and Nasmil have taken charge of Marsia's Spanish classes. She has learned caballo and chinola. Caballo is horse (a staple in anyone's vocabulary), and chinola is of course her favorite drink as of late. For those of you who would like the recipe for chinola juice: Take chinola, scoop out the inside and blend. Strain the seeds, add water and some sugar and there you go! Jugo de chinola. If your local market doesn't have chinola, you'll have to improvise.
Marsia had her first visit to La Sirena store, where you can find most anything, from '70's helmet hairdryers to Octopus. These are top of the line items, not antiques. We exchanged some $ and found that we get 36 pesos per $1US dollar. I was going to buy some tortillas, but they were like $275 pesos which is a lot, like almost, like $8 or so for 8. Crazy. I don't know...... but I think there may be a market here for some good Mexican food.
Then, we topped the day off with a very interesting party at Milvia's Pastor's house. After a bit
of individual testimony we were served a plate that was HEAPING with cornmeal mash and beef, (we think). Neither of us could, or should have eaten it, as our plates were by far the heaviest of the 100 people served. We spent most of our time trying to find the most perfect way to make use of our food, without offending anyone. Milvia came to my rescue and gave my partially eaten meal to her sister. Marsia was on her own. She's a big girl, afterall.
At the party I met a very nice woman named Esther, who is a doctor in a small village near Neiba, where Milvia is from. (about 3 hours from Sto. Domingo). She wants to work with us in getting items to the most needy. We are hopeful that this friendship will blossom and we will make some great connections in that part of the island.
Mivia made fish for Marsia, and I know this is going to be hard to believe.... she loved it. LOVED it. She at it all up. Milvia is such a great cook. Marsia was thankful that Nassuel had tipped his mom off to serve it without the head or eyes.
Marsia learned to wash dishes the Dominican way, store water and milk a cat. Basic survival skills here in the DR.
Ok, enough for today. Can't wait to catch you all up on our day at the beach later, so much to tell. Que dios los bendiga a todos.
Jill for Marsia