Sunday, August 28, 2011

Be Cool, Stay In School

Yesterday was a big, big day for this guy.

I can't remember if I have told you, it has been very difficult to get Innocent to go to school for some time now. 
It seems to be recommended that you go rather than enforced and, as you can imagine, an education is the only best thing the orphanage can offer these kids for their future. 

That said, school started back on Monday and Inn had been gently given a new perspective on why school is important and given a few new goals to work towards.

His first reward was, if he go to school for one full week, every day, he could go into Gisenyi on Saturday and swim in the lake and eat a nice dinner. 
He was thrilled...until Monday morning. 
To be fair, I wasn't that thrilled at 6am, either. 
But, he went. Finally. And he went (almost) every other day, as well. 
Except Tuesday, he was sick and I let him stay home. Judge me. I can take it.

Soooo, into Gisenyi we went. 
He got all dressed up in his fancy clothes and packed his bag with his "swimsuit" and towel. He could hardly keep the smile off his face.

Lake Kivu is a beautiful lake surrounded by mountains and posh hotels that lies on the border of Rwanda and the DRC (Congo). It is a great weekend hotspot.

When we got down to the water, it wasn't that sunny. And it took him a while to get warmed up to the idea of getting in.

Yes, his "swimsuit" is a pair of hotpants that reads "dancer" across the butt. 
When I opened the bag of donations containing said hotpants, I questioned the thinking behind donating such an item to an orphanage, however I suppose they came in handy. 
Megan, I know you're dying!!! :)

Anyway, once he got going, this boy is a fish!

And me?

And back to swimming.

I love this face so much.
We were briefly interrupted by 8,000 men filling 8,000 jerry cans.
Mostly for cooking.

So, Inn took that time to completely cover him and me in sand.

It started to rain a bit, so we packed up and cleaned up and headed down the beach to take cover and have a snack at The Serena pool.

 Inn loves to talk on the phone. 
When he gave the phone back, my mom asked, "What was he saying?"
Who knows.

And me?

When the rain stopped, we went back down to the beach.

And he made a few friends.
I couldn't help but think this is what mommas must feel like.
I could hardly watch, thinking,
 "Oh, I hope they are nice...I hope they like him...I hope he is polite...."

They got along great and played for a very long time.

And me?

And look who else showed up. Just in time for dinner.
Sweet Clever is one of my very best friends here. He is 24 and grew up at Noel. He is now in University and works relentlessly around the orphanage.

I take him to dinner often for all the help he is to me.
It is such a treat to him and it's a treat for me to get out. 
Lately, we have been on a hotel tour of Gisenyi, eating at all the restaurants; 
most he has never been inside. 
This was his first time to Serena.

At this point, I had taken a ton of pictures. I know you're thinking, "WE KNOW."
Anyway, I got lazy. And didn't get Inn devouring his club sandwich and french fries.
So, I'll just leave you with one last picture of Clever and his chicken burger (which is delicious).

P.S. Innocent loves knowing that his pictures are being "sent to America". :)


Steffanie Riley said...

Give Innocent a big hug for me! He is precious! :) I admire what you are doing so much! Keep the posts coming!

Megan said...

You're right, i completely died! You have changed his life in so many ways already and I have no doubt you will continue! I knew those hotpants would come in handy ;-)

Ashley M. said...

Tara. I just caught casey in here reading all of your blogs! He's so intrigued. He wants to know all about what you do everyday! Gotta love him:)!

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