A note from Lyol to the Williamsport Eagles,
|My January birthday party at the river, eating an apple|
Hello from Tchad, Africa!
Naythan, it's really hot here. That's the first thing I think about when people ask me what it's like. The food is really different too, partly because it's so hot and partly because people are so poor. Like today, for example, I ate an apple. But that's really rare. They don't grow here because it's too hot. They are all imported, which makes them really expensive! An apple costs 50 cents, which is half a day's wages!!!
Titus, for fun I play and eat whatever fruit is growing on our trees. Right now, we have more guavas than we can eat. I'm only five, so I don't climb the big guava trees very high. But in the smaller guava trees, I can climb high enough to pick my own guavas. Otherwise, I ask my older friends to climb high and they pick guavas for us to share. When guava season is finished, the mangos start. I looooooooooooooove mangos. Around 6pm every day from January to July, you can find me covered head to toe with mango juice. They're so good and so much better than you find in the stores in America. And we have so many huge mango trees. There are more mangos than we can eat. We also grow a lot of papayas. We have a few pomegranates we brought over from America. Last week we ate our first pomegranate from our own tree! We also have a lot of banana trees, but we don't get bananas super often from our own trees. More often, we have to buy them from the outdoor market or from the ladies who come to our door to sell us fruit. I know how to climb up our pantry shelves to where mommy and daddy keep the money. Then I take the money outside, buy the fruit (we also get okra, potatoes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, eggplant, eggs and other stuff) and then bring it inside.
I play with my brother and sister, Zane and Addison, as well as other missionary children, Emmie and Grace, who are 9 and 11. I also have lots of Tchadian friends. I played with Papa (Nicolas), Tony, Appolinaire, Tessem and some other kids today. I'm learning a lot of French, but a lot of my friends don't even speak French. They only speak the local language, Nangere, so I'm learning a little bit of that too. I'm even learning a little Arabic, as it's spoken often here too.
Titus, we have running water whenever Zane picks up a pail and runs with it! Just kidding. We do have running water. Although a week ago, the generator wasn't working well, so we didn't have good electricity, so the water pump couldn't get the water up to our tower and there was no running water. We used to run out of water a couple times a day, but now we have an automatic float switch in our water tank, so the water pump turns on automatically when it's low. It saves my dad from needing to walk up to the hospital in the middle of the night to turn on the pump.
And Titus, I love playing with legos too!!! My dad says I'm really good at it. Maybe we can play together with legos some time! That would be fun.
Elrik, of course I'm obeying my mom and dad! I'm a missionary kid. We're perfect! I'm just kidding again. I'm not perfect and I get in trouble with my mommy and daddy just like any other kid. But I try my best to be good and obey.
|Tchadian dress for church|
Joy, we do get sick sometimes. It's usually malaria. We have to take really yucky medicine, quinine. I'm really good at swallowing pills. And I get candy after I take it. I like the other medicine better, like Tylenol and Motrin, but that doesn't work against malaria.Karen, we go to church. Actually, we go to churches. Sabbath is probably my favorite day. I love going to church and I get really excited. We like to go out to small villages on our motorcycle. We just stop under a big mango tree and all the kids come around. It's kinda weird, because even far away from our house, all the kids know my name and yell, 'Lyol, Lyol, Lyol!!!' I don't even know them! They also like to touch my skin and hair, because it's different from theirs. Mommy or Daddy tells a Bible story. Sometimes I help with the felts. Or we'll act out the story. Or we'll do something else. I love singing the songs. I know songs in French and Nangere too. So we usually do that, then come to our big church at the hospital too. Our big hospital church is probably like yours, just without electricity or pews with backs. We don't have adventurers, but we have pathfinders! But I'm too little still.
Nathanael, I do have a lot of toys! Daddy says I have too many! I like to share them with my friends here who don't have any. But my Tchadian friends are really smart! They know how to make the coolest toys from mud and sticks. In fact, they make me toys. Those toys are some of my favorites. I love my friends here so much, but I also really miss my cousins in America.