I just finished The Kite Runner recommended to me by my friend Suvi and my sister Charla. It's such a well written book but I had a hard time going on with the story at times because of the tragedy and horrific abuse. There's a continuous sense of hope and self-reconciliation but still a harsh reality of what children in a different part of the world are going through. I was depressed for a good while.
When I was on a mission in southern Italy I met the most loving woman at a park who was tending to two beautiful little girls. One of the little girls was her daughter and the other was a little girl from the Ukraine that had come to stay with her for a few months in the summer. She was an orphan and she came to live with this family through a program that sends orphans to stay with healthy families and get a feel for what family life like. This was the second time that she had come to be with the particular family and the mother had hopes of adopting her when it became possible. The girl also had these hope. I have since lost contact with them and don't know the outcome but it's just another reminder of the need there is all over the world for the rest of the world to remember what is happening to little beautiful children. The situation in the orphanage was bleak and I hope that she was able to realize her dream of being a part of her Italian family. I'm going to try and find my Italian friend and see how things worked out. When I met her I had the distinct feeling that she was a person with a special ability to love. I think I got teary eyed the first time we talked. I loved going to her home and learning of her life.
. . . this weekend was also the Late New Years Party for the Maryhill Integration Network and the women that I taught and choreographed for performed the piece we made for the 16 Days of Action to counteract violence against women. Here are some of the photos of the dance and the celebration. And yes, the women are gorgeous-I already knew what you were thinking! There are also some photos of a fantastic musician that did an music workshop for the children. He played at the end with a band while people danced and it was loads of fun.