Saturday, December 5, 2009

'A' is for acid bug

Earlier this week my Kindergarteners started making their own alphabet book. When we discussed words that started with an 'A' one of them said, 'I know! 'A' is for acid bug!'

Due to weather patterns and seasonal changes, these bugs have been prominent on the outdoor decks over the last month or two. My students often see them at break time and this causes excitement for some and a little bit of fear for others...
According to experts, " acid bugs contain a toxic chemical that causes contact dermatitis in humans as a result of crushing or slapping the beetle on exposed skin. The affected area becomes red, swollen and itchy causing the skin to peel when scratched. The adult bugs are attracted to artificial light. "

Acid bug

That answer from my student has inspired me to create an ABC of Mercy Ships. Here goes...

A is for acid bug.

B is for blackouts.

C is for community meetings.

D is for drills.

E is for fire extinguishers everywhere you look.

F is for fan-ice.

G is for goodbyes to good friends.

H is for hospital.

I is for cabin inspections.

J is for the joy that patients have after surgery.

K is for Kindergarten.

L is for life boats and life vests.

M is for medical staff.

N is for nurses.

O is for operations.

P is for pancakes on Wednesdays.

Q is for 'Quiet in reception, please!'

R is for roommates.

S is for sailing.

T is for Tenerife.

U is for unexpected experiences like dinner with the president.

V is for visas.

W is for ward church.

X is for X-ray room.

Y is for 'yovo'.

Z is for zimmis.

Exodus Orphanage

Exodus Orphanage houses about 50 orphans ranging in age from babies to teenagers. Last weekend some friends and I went to visit these kids for the last time before the end of the outreach.

We arrived just as the kids were going to church and attended the service with them. The service was in a classroom - the pastor sat at the desk in the front of the class and we squashed into the desks with the children. After the kids lead us in worship the pastor invited us to the front to share a testimony or a word of encouragement.

During the church service

One of the crew who visited the orphanage earlier this year was led to raise funds to provide beds, mattresses and other essentials for them . Her ministry was able to continue when she left Benin thanks to a friend and crew member who continued to arrange visits to the orphanage regularly. Karl built beds for the kids while the other crew members played with the orphans during the visits.

After church our friends invited us to lunch as a way to thank us. We spent the rest of the afternoon playing and laughing with them.

The lunch line. We were impressed with how they lined up from shortest to tallest.

Our lunch

Some of the children. These boys love the camera!

Sher with her new friends.

Kelly treated the girls to a manicure.

Karl arm wrestling with the boys.

This little boy stole my heart.

Showing off their beds with Ben.