Swan Day 7 – Road Opening

Hey it’s Rianna and Tia,

Today we started with a big flippin breakfast after the live like a local day! They spoiled us with banana fritters (so yummy). After that we headed to Parok Bangkal. Our group split into three. The first group went shelling, the second group washed clothes, and the third group (us) tried out the Carabao (Water Buffalo). The Carabao activity consisted of one person holding and steering a metal plow thing while a water buffalo, called Georgie, pulled it. Our group then moved on to trying sugarcane, hearing stories, making bracelets, and painting the basketball court lines.

We then had lunch which consisted of chicken on a stick for Tia and vegies for Ri. Mr Scott, our principal, soon arrived for the opening of the road. While we waited, we gave all the children Australian flags, watched some basketball, and then walked with the children to the entrance of the road where we greeted Mr Scott. He arrived and we sang our national anthem. Speeches were made by Brother Bert and Pastor Gary. Mr Scott and Renee were given the scissors and cut the ribbon, opening Donnison Drive.

The team then sunscreened up, put our hats on our heads, and went to continue to build the road. Some of us hauled pebbles/rocks from the pile, to level out the road. Others shovelled dirt and used pickaxes to break the hard layer on top of the pile of dirt, as it had rained the night before. The rest of the team used 2-man make-shift stretches to carry the dirt and dump it over the rock. From there we compacted it down by jumping and stepping all over it. We got the little children to help carry the tiny rocks so we could fill in small parts of the road. It was very encouraging when most of the kids stood on the sides and cheered us on every time we walked past. Tia’s newest heartthrob, Marjohn, was quite quick to jump in and help her with carrying rocks (aww <3).

After we had finished our work we got washed up and ready to play with the kids before we left. There was some confusion, but we ended up having a celebratory dinner party at the community. This consisted of a whole roast pig, potato salad with apple, and we cannot forget the good old coconut spring rolls. Everyone then grabbed their bags, took hold of the kids hands, and made our way to the bus. It was already quite emotional for all of us and the children during our departure, even though it wasn’t yet our last day. There were some tears shed, plenty of hugs shared, and many goodbye waves. The music supplied by Pitto made the bus ride bangin but so did the ice-creams that we stopped in to get.

Getting back to the hotel we got ready for a much needed pool debrief. After drying off we headed to the hotel lobby and started our Arnis training. Arnis is a form of Filipino martial arts. Our Guro was patient and helped a lot with the moves. We used sticks as weapons and then moved onto the hand combat.

The next activity was what you could consider the hunger games. The previous night we brought wacky snacks from the supermarket. We put the food in the middle, lined up, and went for whatever food we wanted to try. In the end we all ended up sharing anyway. There was rainbow bread, chilli chocolate, spaghetti flavoured fries, bacon chips, and many more. Now Tia and Rianna are sitting here writing the blog in an incredibly tired state. We are excited for the day tomorrow but not looking forward to saying our goodbyes to the community and our new-found family.

Nighty Night 🙂

9 thoughts on “Swan Day 7 – Road Opening

  1. Thank Ri and Tia. Written so well. I think all you have a pretty cool fan club who will never forget you. Enjoy today with your community. Cant wait to see more pics.

  2. Heyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy it’s me!!!! I stayed up as long as I could last night- but I couldn’t stay awake to see this blog- ahhhhhhh,,,, morning !!!!!!!!!! Glad to hear you have had some variety in your diet. Hannah- you are a star!!!!! It’s a long road- but it is worth the journey -hahaaaaa…. Hope today is great for you all- but especially for our Dan. xxx Big hugs and kisses. xxooooxxxxoooooxxoooxooxoxoxoxooxooxoxoxoxoxoxo

  3. Jeremy, I know you were hungry- but coral – really ??? And for Dan- yell out CORAL!!!!!!! CARLLLLLLL!!!!!!!

  4. Sounds like another awesome but tiring day for you lot. Love all the smiles. How cool was learning arnis??? Thought ya might of put up a pic of your “heartthrob” Tia? 😀 miss you so much tee-wee can’t wait for you to come home, it’s like torture not be able to speak to you. 😥😥💔 you are doing dad and I proud.❤ the string of pearls started dying as soon as you left. 😕 (not happy Jan.) dad misses you, boys say hi, Logan’s started counting down the days. All you kids are doing a wonderful job (and teachers) and we are all very proud of what you are doing, it’s not easy being miles away and especially with no phone calls to say a quick g’day to family,but the experience is so

  5. Worth it and it’s something that you will always remember. Well gotta go before my eyes start to rain. 💧💧😀 much love to you all. 😘 😘😘😘😘😘

  6. Loved reading about day 7. You are all experiencing so many different things, and achieving so much. Keep up the smiles and enjoy your last few days there. Your families are proud of you. Miss you and love you. 😘😘
    P.S. Wouldn’t mind trying some of that chilli chocolate

  7. Hi everyone 😜
    Thanks for all the amazing pics
    Yes i think it’s going to be hard to say goodbye to everyone ..
    It looks like you’ve all made some amazing friendships along the way. All the kids are going to miss you dearly!!
    Keep up the great work and make the most of your last few days there 😊
    Oh …Your cats are still alive
    and Mitch says .. Hi
    Missing you heaps Georgia xx

  8. Hey Georgie R
    Great to see that beautiful smile and you doing well, you all look as though you are having an awesome adventure along with picking up some character building life skills..

    Helping out others as you have will remain with you guys forever..
    Very gutsy and you should be very proud of yourself and others.

    Love you heaps
    See you soon Dad Xxx

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