A phrase that we have started to say over the past few weeks is ‘you just got Perued’. When asking the team what exactly the phrase means they replied “when you expect to go about life normally, but then Peruvians have a completely different plan or idea that they don’t tell you about”. It is safe to say that we encounter this on a daily basis, whether it’s not being told what classes we’re teaching or being taken out for ceviche (Peru’s national dish). Although it can at times be frustrating, we’ve had many spontaneous and fun experiences where we’ve been Perued!
One Wednesday afternoon, we were in the school hall getting ready to go back to our flat, make a cup of tea and finish some last minute preparations for English Day. Little did we know that the headteacher, Hermana Debora, would soon walk in and inform us that we were now ‘going to go to the party’. On the way, she informed us it was a celebration for Spring and new life; however, the party mainly seemed to be a celebration of single people. Although it wasn’t exactly how we were planning to spend our afternoon, we laughed a lot and each received a balloon and a box of chocolates for being single (despite Bethan not even being single!). At the end of the party, we found out that it was meant to be celebrated on 23rd September, but in true Peruvian style we were celebrating it a month and a half late!
As mentioned in our last blog, we spent our first month at Bethel School preparing the kids for English Day. It was a day which gave the kids the opportunity to show their parents the English they have learnt. On the day, they performed dialogues and songs in English that we had taught them and helped them practice. During the week, they also competed in spelling competitions. The day was a huge success! We loved watching them, and felt extremely proud of all they’ve learnt and how hard they’ve worked. It also gave us a sense of achievement, as we had greatly contributed to the preparations for the day.
We were definitely Perued last week, as we weren’t told that it was the Bethel Olympics, which were similar to a British sports day. However, we soon realised it was taken much more seriously! The school was split into four different coloured teams, battling it out over games of football, volleyball and of course your classic sack race and wheel barrow race. Each of us were put on different teams and cheered from the sidelines, where we learnt lots of Spanish football chants! It was three days of unity, fun and lots of facepaint!
Seeing the kids show everything they’d learnt on English Day. It was great seeing their hard work pay off and gave us a sense of achievement.
As we have been forming relationships with the kids at school, they have been starting to open up to us about some of their difficult home situations. Some of the cases we have heard have been heartbreaking and it seems so unfair that kids so young have to suffer such difficult situations. It has really made us think about how fortunate we are.
We had a phase where we struggled to see our purpose for being in Peru. Last week, we had a team Bible study that reminded us that God has a plan and a purpose for us, even if we do not understand it or see the results of our work while we are here. One verse that has helped us and has even kept spookily popping up in different places is Galatians 6:9 – Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
- We’d really appreciate if you could pray for the kids at the Bethel school, that they feel God’s love for them and that they can talk to us about their problems, as well as that we have the right words to say to them.