Saturday, June 16, 2012

Day 9 - JAFSP (Last day at work sites)

Last day at School of Hope
The last day at the Infirmary, School of Hope and the Homeless Shelter came and it was bittersweet. We all did not want to say goodbye to these special people and wished that they could have music teachers, music therapists, and literacy tutors on a daily basis. I was the supervisor on site for the School of Hope and the children hugged us throughout the day, some sitting in our laps while others just putting their arms around us while we sang. At the end of the day, the teachers, principal and all the students of the school came outside and did a presentation of dancing which they had prepared. One of the teachers said that they were so grateful for our time there and that they did not have time to go to the store to buy us a gift, but presented us with a pineapple from one of the bushes on the property as a token of their appreciation. We were deeply touched. One of the girls wrote a note to a music therapy student that read something like, "I love you and will miss you. Please come find me. I miss you.". Our hearts were full.
Group on last day at School of Hope
During the afternoon I took a swim in the pool to cool off and then we went to a place called Woodsy's for burgers. It was a quaint little place where those who wanted veggie burgers got shredded vegetables made into patties between bread. We all were excited for french fries, but when I had some, I realized I didn't want them except for the salt. I also realized that I have eaten more cabbage on this trip than I likely have eaten in my lifetime. My diet here has been vegetarian for a large percentage of my meals. They just know how to blend vegetables in a way that is very palatable!

Students waiting for dinner at Woodys

JAFSP interns

We returned for our drumming class after dinner and reviewed all the Afro-Caribbean rhythms and songs which we will be tested on Saturday evening. Trying to keep the rhythm patterns (and different parts) straight with their appropriate names and songs is challenging! After the class, Kumina drummers from the hills came and performed this specific type of drumming/dancing for us. This is a very ceremonial type of drumming and they use Jamaican White Rum to wipe down drums to purify them. 

Kumina drummers
 Tomorrow we head to Port Antoino's open market, pack, settle our food bills at the guest house, and many other details. We will have our final drumming class and then go into to town to play for the locals. It should be quite the celebration---and while we are all excited to go home, I think, it will be hard to leave such a beautiful and exotic place and people.

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