Today was the last day at the CRC. The past two weeks have flown by in the blink of an eye. It seems like just yesterday we were meeting the kids for the first time and now we are packing our bags to leave.
This morning we woke up and went right back over to the CRC to finish painting the last house. After four straight days of rolling, brushing and dabbing the paint onto the walls we have become experts and were able to finish all that we needed to by noon. To close out our morning Bishop Yambasu and Bishop Humper stopped by and ate lunch with us. They were so gracious. It was amazing to hear their stories about how the CRC first got started. After lunch it was time to pack. We spent a couple of hours getting ourselves all packed up and ready to head out.
Once we were done packing, the children at the CRC were waiting for us at 4 PM to perform another one of their amazing cultural dance routines. With multiple drums and shakers creating the beat and the voices of the aunties and children, the sound was so beautiful that I couldn’t get the smile off of my face. The children walked in, wearing traditional grass skirts, necklaces and paint covering their bodies. Over the next hour they were doing songs and dances known to their African heritage. Each one of the dancers was proud and happy to be showing off their culture. Culture is bred into these children; they have so much pride and love for their country it is amazing. By the end they had all of us attempting to do one of their dances. Needless to say it was a fun time.
We went back over to the CRC for our farewell celebration after dinner at the usual time. Fudia cooked our last dinner of fried chicken. She would have KFC running for the hills it was so delicious. The children had prepared two separate plays for us in the Great Hall. You can tell that they had rehearsed and put so much effort and time into what they were doing. Their costumes and acting were wonderful. All of the children were so passionate and creative! The two plays were funny and brought smiles to our faces. In one of the plays the children had to be “Americans” and the older boys had crooked bandanas wrapped around their heads, with baggy pants, and dribbling a basketball. The whole audience was laughing hysterically. After the plays we danced the night away with the children. Playing some of the popular African music on a loud-speaker, everyone was up and dancing. Eric was break dancing with the boys, and the girls had the rest of us trying to learn some new dance moves. It was a perfect way to end the evening and I will cherish that memory forever.
Although the goodbyes were sad and tears were shed, it still was amazing to think about all of the people we have met, the experiences we have had and the memories we have made. I am so glad to have each one of those children in my life. They made my smile a little bigger each day. Tomorrow morning we are leaving the MTC at 6 AM to head back into Freetown., We are hoping to have a relaxing and picture perfect day on River Beach No. 2. Please keep the team and me in your thoughts and prayers as we travel throughout the day.
Submitted by Allie Broadus