Swan Day 8 – Bye Bye Sagay

Kane and Fraser here, to be honest, we haven’t read any of the other blogs, therefore we have no idea how they’ve gone about writing them. We’re going to take a reflective, personal approach on the day and its events. Today presented the bitter taste of reality as the community’s smiles brought us all to tears.

The day began with Beacham banging on our door and waking up at 7:20am. Minotti, our doorman, was nowhere to be seen. Breakfast was our usual selection of rice, egg, banana and pineapple (can’t have a meal here without it). We were amused by Vanessa’s classic comments and memes, they really get us going in the morning. Today was Angeneth’s birthday, everyone singing happy birthday brought her to tears. The spontaneous bus karaoke commenced as usual on the way to Bulanon High School.

As we arrived at Bulanon, the students welcomed us with a performance of drums and baton twirling. It seemed as though we were celebrities as everyone was hanging over balconies and pushing others just to see us. We had hardly made it through the gate and every ten metres we were stopped for selfies. Once we visited the principal out of an act of cultural respect, we split up into small groups, separating into a different range of classrooms and year groups. It was interesting to see how the grade tens were seventeen and eighteen like most of us. In the groups, we introduced ourselves individually and taught them Australian slang and just general information about our country and its animals. They took more selfies and asked us questions about ourselves. Kane was asked if he was single, he replied yes, all the girls screamed along with the one gay guy who asked where could he apply. I (Kane) felt our time spent there was too short.  The band played again as we exited the school.

We arrived in Purok Bangkal to see the road had turned to mud from last night’s torrential downpour. It was slightly heartbreaking to see how easily it was destroyed and how the community have to deal with that when it often rains. A man named Jon Jon who had helped us build the road in previous days gave us some news that his child was stillborn. This news hit us hard and it was surprising to see how he was still smiling and seemed as this was a normal thing to happen.

House visits were next, everyone split into their groups and bared a dish of food to a house each. Then everyone squeezed into the tiny wood shacks and asked personal questions about each of the families lives and situations. Today was different as we were able to bond more with the community instead of spending the majority of the day working on the road. We feasted away on everybody’s favourite, except for the vegans lol, chicken on a stick. Time with the community involved, volleyball, balloon making, tickle wars, karate chopping, basketball and deep conversations followed by a few tears. Although we all knew that it was last day to spend with our new family, everyone still had massive smiles on their faces. Everyone began to capture memories for ourselves and our buddies on polaroid cameras, some people wrote and others received letters.

The time had come, we had to leave Purok Bangkal, tears were flowing as we slowly made our way down the unfinished and torn up road. Some of us gave our shoes and other various gifts to the kids that we had come closest too so that they would have something that would remind them of our time together.

A little boy named Jerim held my hand and followed me around the past few days. His smile was too big and out of proportion for his face. Carrying my backpack on the walk to the bus at the end of each day the kid never stopped smiling when he looked at me. His eyes filled with wonder, innocence, and hope. Today was different though, as the feeling hit hard when we realised we had to leave, it felt like the last day of year twelve again. Some, if not most of these people you would never see again; and after an amazing week of joy, my heart broke. Being the manly man I am, ha, I uncontrollably began to cry.

The long walk of silence and sniffles endured and we all walked down the muddy road to the bus. With my hand on Jerim’s shoulder, he smiled up at me every time I looked down at him. It was only once we reached the bus, everyone hugged and boarded, tears were everywhere. Looking out the window of the bus, in the sea of crying and moaning children, Jerim was there looking at me in tears, the first time I saw him not crying.

It pains me a lot to face the fact that in reality, life is not fair, and what we’ve done on this trip is amazing, but just a drop in the ocean. I don’t know what will happen to Jerim, will he be there if I ever return, will he get a proper education, etc.

Anyways, I guess that was a personal story that broke me. (Kane)

Dinner with the scholars then came, and we all feasted and partied to the usual Zumba and dance tunes. Finally tonight we got some real karaoke happening after Ryan downed thirty balout eggs, breaking the previous record of twenty-seven.

We said our final goodbyes and left.

Now sat in this hotel, I finish writing this at 12:16am, so please enjoy the great sentences we put together.

Cheers for reading today’s blog, and shout out to the birthday girl, my mum (on the 30th).


11 thoughts on “Swan Day 8 – Bye Bye Sagay

  1. Hi Kane, I’ve just woken up on my birthday without you here and your blog brought me to tears. You are such a beautiful soul and I’m so proud of what you’re doing. I’m missing you like crazy and can’t wait to see you on Saturday. Love Mum xxx

  2. Great blog Kane and Fraser! You made me laugh and cry! Kane your mum will be so proud of you, it will be the best birthday present she could have hoped for.

  3. Aww…that was so heartfelt and touching :’) Thanks for sharing guys. Harleen – I said I wouldnt cry but I totally failed with this update. As you change the world it changes all of us too. The trip only lasts a short while but the memories and hearts you touched will last a lifetime. So proud of you all. Enjoy the rest of the trip and cant wait to hear so much more when we see you soon xxx

  4. Hi Kane and Fraser, what a blog!! Humour, sadness so much emotion. As a group you all new you would be making an impact and changing lives however I wonder if you all realised how much these people would change yours? Take care all of you and cherish the memories both happy and sad that you all have had the opportunity to make. Fraser we can’t wait to see you even Isabelle claims she is missing you ! See you soon. Love Mum (Kelly to you Kane or 2nd Mum) and the rest of the Marshall’s.

  5. An amazing insight to how friendships have formed and hearts have been touched. Yes i had tears in my eyes too when reading today’s/yesterdays update. What a privilege for each of us to be raised in Australia with so many opportunities, and in saying that i personally thank you all for helping where you have, and bonding where you have with people who have such limited opportunities. You will remember this forever – knowing that instead of spending your leavers thinking only about yourself and how much fun was had, you guys went out and helped people and thought of others way beyond any thought of your own interests. You have GIVEN- and that impact will last forever in the minds of those you have helped and also in your own lives as you reflect. Allow yourself to feel proud with humility.
    I am so looking forward to you coming home Thomi, as i miss you heaps and am so looking forward to hearing your own stories. Think of what you want for dinner on Saturday night – the choice is yours 🙂
    May your last moments of this trip be all you hope for.

  6. Wonderful blog Fraser and Kane- tell Dan I didn’t cry- but I did !!!!He knows me well xxxx If I was on the trip I would have been a blubbering idiot at the end.I tried to stay up til you posted- missed it by a few minutes,,, Swannies always the bronze medallist. I am proud that you have felt the impact of your trip , I agree with Marlene that we are lucky to be Aussies and have all the opportunities available to us.
    Now on the light side- phew-Ryan- 30 balout eggs- wowsers!!!!!!!, I reckon Dan did 2 !!!!! Nice balloon dog ????? Daniel !!!????? Nice to see the drum corps represented Alexia and Maddy. Have a great day peeps,,,, big smooshy kisses Dandy- very proud of you xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  7. “Graduation (Friends Forever)” by Vitamin 1999 !!!!!!!!!

    And so we talked all night about the rest of our lives
    Where we’re gonna be when we turn 25
    I keep thinking times will never change
    Keep on thinking things will always be the same
    But when we leave this year we won’t be coming back
    No more hanging out cause we’re on a different track
    And if you got something that you need to say
    You better say it right now cause you don’t have another day
    Cause we’re moving on and we can’t slow down
    These memories are playing like a film without sound
    And I keep thinking of that night in June
    I didn’t know much of love
    But it came too soon
    And there was me and you
    And then we got real blue
    Stay at home talking on the telephone
    And we would get so excited and we’d get so scared
    Laughing at ourselves thinking life’s not fair
    And this is how it feels

    As we go on
    We remember
    All the times we
    Had together
    And as our lives change
    Come whatever
    We will still be
    Friends Forever

    So if we get the big jobs
    And we make the big money
    When we look back now
    Will our jokes still be funny?
    Will we still remember everything we learned in school?
    Still be trying to break every single rule
    Will little brainy Bobby be the stockbroker man?
    Can Heather find a job that won’t interfere with her tan?
    I keep, keep thinking that it’s not goodbye
    Keep on thinking it’s a time to fly
    And this is how it feels

    [Repeat 1]

    La, la, la, la:
    Yeah, yeah, yeah
    La, la, la, la:
    We will still be friends forever

    Will we think about tomorrow like we think about now?
    Can we survive it out there?
    Can we make it somehow?
    I guess I thought that this would never end
    And suddenly it’s like we’re women and men
    Will the past be a shadow that will follow us around?
    Will these memories fade when I leave this town
    I keep, keep thinking that it’s not goodbye
    Keep on thinking it’s a time to fly

    [Repeat 1 (3x)]

  8. Oh no, more tears from me…at work this time but I don’t care! That was an awesome blog guys. So we’ll written and heartfelt. I could feel your sadness 😢. You should all be so proud of yourselves because we are so proud of you all 😘😘

  9. Feel free to sponsor a child so that they can continue their education. Brother Bert can help! It costs so little when we waste so much. Help keep the hope alive guys. Leave a legacy

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