The holidays are finally over and the kids are back at school today. It was a fun 3.5 weeks off of school though! We had lots of playdates, went to the pool, the beach and as a family we went to Jayapura for a day. We hit the new mall they’ve built there. There are two large stores open in it already along with a few other smaller ones. They always open malls here long before they are actually completed. After that we had a picnic lunch at the beach and then supper at Pizza Hut.
Some of the other highlights of the holidays are:
* getting to ride in a boat alongside a pod of jumping porpoises at the beach. Wow!
* On Christmas Day the tradition is to visit the houses of people you know who are having open houses. We visited three. It was hard not to eat too much food at each one knowing we were going to be eating Christmas dinner in just a few hours. At the last house Mikah was very brave and tried dog meat for the first time. I wouldn’t go near it…
* Another tradition is that we hand out snacks to all the neighbourhood kids after Christmas. The first year we were here we were mystified why kids kept coming to our door to say “Selamat Hari Natal!”. Then one of Hugo’s co-workers filled him in. Since then we are always prepared with cookies to hand out. This year we had approximately 50 kids come to our door over a period of a few days.
*Mikah and a friend and her daughter and I stayed a night in Jayapura and went shopping and enjoyed massages.
* R has been given a job! Yay! She will of course have a three month probation first but it’s at a good school! We are very excited for her but that did mean that I had to find a new helper. Yesterday E started work for the first day. She’s very sweet and has two young children.
* It has been one year since I had to let “I” go from her job in our home. Since that time I have not seen her even once and she lives approximately 300 meters from our home… I still feel great sadness when I think about it.