As the title so suggests, this was my second week to go with Katie to help a few of the Somali families. My job really is "distract the kids so Katie (and now Nicole) can help the adults." With some occassional tutoring. Which is fine. Love it. I must admit that tonight the kids and I were slightly more distracting than we should have been, but we were having so much fun!
But here are two funny but slightly traumatic events of the evening that made the "germ-o-phobe" part of me cringe:
1. Ikra showed me how she could lick the bottom of her feet. When I asked Meghaney to PLEASE get one of the mom's lend some authority and tell Ikra to stop doing that, little Elmie and Mohamud decided to show me that they could do it, too. And they can.
2. Elmie (in kindergarten) pulls an old dried piece of chewed gum off of a bulletin board and proceeds to happily chew it in front of me. When I begged him to PLEASE not do that and get rid of it, he promptly obliged- by handing it to Mohamud, who then ALSO proceeds to chew it. Blech.
Katie says that compared to their old life, old chewed gum is really no big deal. True. Speaking of which, we played a game where the three boys (including me) sat on the floor while the two girls played something which seemed to be an African variant of "...my mother says to pick the best one and you are not IT!" Interesting enough, but another aspect of the game was to pretend to get food and immediately hide it so no one else knows you have it. I can't help but think this is a direct result of spending almost their whole lives in a refugee camp under harsh conditions. Sharing may not have been much of an option (though these families certainly do stick together). All cultural meaning aside, kids will still be kids, and when it came time to "examine the food," Meghaney informed me that I didn't actually have any food, but rather a big handfull of "doo-doo." Laughter ensued.