Thursday, April 22, 2010

Beach Day in the DR

Our last day in the DR. What a ride this has been. Brenda has decided to take the kids to the beach for the day. This is a big deal to the kids ... it's a trip on a bus, with the Americans, to the beach to play in the ocean. Now, not everyone can go. The bus is only so big. So the teacher decides who can go and who has to stay. This is heartbreaking for most of us watching it happen. Especially when one sibling is chosen and one is not. This moment in time showed me how true the bond between siblings really is down here.

So we are packed in the bus, riding along these super-windy roads to "the beach". The music is blaring Antony Santos and we are all in awe of the beauty that surrounds us outside of Habanero. The ride is over an hour and most of the children take a nap. Actually, a good portion of the adults take a nap too.

We arrive and the kids run, immediately to where the ocean meets the surf. Now, Brenda had decided not to go with us. She went to Haiti that day instead. But she left explicit instructions for us not to let the kids go into the ocean. There is a pool they could swim in - a man made pool that they actually made themselves with sandbags. Crazy. ( see the photos on the FB Fan page) Anyway, so we are watching these beautiful white, foamy waves crash onto the beach and we are all wondering how are we supposed to keep the kids out of the water? WE want to be in the water!

Now the beach here is very different from the beach here. The coastline isn't sand, it's teeny-tiny rocks. And it goes for miles. There's literally nothing but rocks and water.

I'm watching the kids strip down, run into the water and ride the waves back. I head down near the water to make sure they are ok (yah right) and decide to get in with them. How FUN! I swear, all that dirt, sweat, sand and muck from Habanero that was on my skin and my feet...gone! I think how incredible this would be to have a spa similiar to this in the states. You don't need all those chemicals...just a some smooth rocks, salt and water. (anyone care to partake?)

The kids are loving this. WE are loving this. We watch the locals begin building their "pool" - building a sort of make-shift damn from a river that runs down through the beach area to the ocean. It's quite surreal really.

Carmen, the lady who has been feeding us all week long, with the help of Ramona and Ioti, begin making our lunch. Same wonderful thing every day....perfectly cooked rice, beans, chicken from Manco's chicken stand, beets, tomatos and cabbage. This claudron they bring to the beach is huge and they make an incredible bonfire and begin make our lunch/dinner. These ladies have been so amazing.

It's a lazy day ... one that all of us will remember. I watch the kids make toys out of the garbage on the beach. They chase after each other and bury each other in the rocks. They let their hair down. The olders ones watching out diligently for the little ones. Bliss comes to mind. Perfect place to sit and meditate but instead of isolating myself on a rock somewere, I get in with it all. Wrap myself in their energy, their vibrancy for life, their love for this moment. It's amazingly wonderful.

As I sit on the bus, heading back to Habanero, listening to the children sing, watching some of them sleep, I realize just how wonderful this time has been. It's been like stepping outside myself to see my Self.

How fortunate we are to experience such eye opening experiences in our life. Thank you Brenda.

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