However, there’s a lady named Rose in the village who’s been teaching me Ewe (the local language). So, I was supposed to go for my "quiz" yesterday, and I couldn’t because of dinner club, so I thought I’d go today as life will probably get crazy with all the visitors here. I didn’t bring any books to read tonight as I just wanted to talk with the people and practice all 3 of the Ewe phrases I know…haha…just kidding, but really…we’re talking very limited skills at the moment! Regardless, they seem to get a kick out of teaching me, and I think it’s a great way to get connected with them and show them that we (as missionaries) are not there to change them, but rather to walk alongside them and show them how Christ desires to be a part of their life, as well as the hope and peace He can bring them.
Tonight’s visit to the village was probably the best yet. I did get a chance to practice my Ewe, but also got to be a part of lots of other everyday occasions: I watched Freeman climb a really tall coconut tree to cut some coconuts down. Then they cut one open and shared it with me. This was after my very exhilarating and exhausting workout of learning how to stir/cook the akple, which is a main staple of their diet. It looks a lot like mashed potatoes—but much thicker, and doesn’t take as good (in my opinion). :) They ball it up in their fingers and dip it in a soup. All their cooking is done outdoors. They have 3 large rock-like bumps set in the ground in the shape of a triangle, and the pot sits on top and the sticks for burning go below. (The one day I didn't bring my camera! Ahh!) Anyways, Rose wanted me to try to stir the akple that she was making, and let me tell you, you'd never know by looking at it that it required so much skill...haha...but they definitely had a method...and I was not getting it! :) It definitely made for lots of laughter, though, and there were literally 25+ people gathered around cheering for me...and laughing at me. :) I was exhausted by the end of it, and then Francisca, a 7 year old who goes to school at Haven of Hope, called me in to show me that she is an expert at it...guess I'll have to keep practicing...or continue to let the kids show me up! :)
It was just so great to be there in a real community and feel like I was welcomed and a part of it. I'm no longer "Yevu" (white person)-- although they still call me that! I'm now Miss Dana-- learner of Ewe, friend, and professional akple stirrer-- to-be! :) I love this place!