-Just in case you thought my family consisted of angels, here is a story to prove otherwise.
-(Of course, I am an angel, but I can't say the same for the rest of the horde.)
-This morning I did math. It was boring as ever and I kept messing up the timer and I almost had to do more than an hour of math.
-I may or may not have just guessed and hoped it was an hour.
-I started catechism and then got a call from dad.
-Apparently he and mum and Peter all left.
-Thanks for the heads up, y’all.
“Can you make sure the tank doesn't overflow upstairs. Since you're doing school up there, right?”
“Oh. Yeah sure.”
“Okay.” There is a pause. What am I supposed to do again?
“Okay. Bye?” I say, with a look that would usually accompany a dead rat.
“Bye.” he says and hangs up.
-Ookaay… I guess that was right?
-I do some catechism, and check on the tank a few times. It's got a bit to go.
-Then Meg starts screaming blue murder and I turn to see her slap Isaac on the back.
-She's in tears and her face is covered in dirt and probably some snot thrown into the mix.
-I interrogate Isaac and he has some wild story and none of it's his fault and blah di da di da.
-I fix it as best I can and then go back to catechism.
-After a few questions, Meg is crying yet again.
-I go out, sort through it, and go back to school.
-Then I hear this sound.
-Kind of like running wat-
-So I run over, turn off the valve, get my arm soaked in the meantime and say
“Dagnabit!” About 5-8 times.
-Douglas was downstairs talking to somebody so he comes up to see what's wrong.
-He surveys the spillage and says in his easy way
“Esta bien.” He says, but I sigh and still feel terrible for not paying attention. “Tranquilo.”
-I make my epic: dang-this-is-a-lot-more-than-you’re-making-it-out-to-be-but-fine-I’ll-calm-down-sure-it’ll-be-fine-why-would-it-be-sarcasm-alert-sarcasm-alert! face.
-Don't believe I could look all that in one facial expression? That's where you're wrong, Scaryman!
-I have an exceptionally gifted face.
-So then Douglas leaves and I do school. Then mum and dad get home and we unload some groceries and then we make lunch.
-Well the kids were making fried eggs and tajatas and fried sweet bananas. Except they started the eggs first- AT ELEVEN O CLOCK.
-For the ignorant among you, eleven is waaay too early to start eggs for lunch.
-So I start making the tajatas by warming the oil, ordering the twerps to get the bananas for me, then I peel them, getting my hands ALL sticky in the process- despite putting oil on my hands beforehand.
-Oh! Fun story, I started to light the stove with a match when I realized that I still had oil dripping from my hands.
-Yeah maybe not such a brilliant idea?
-So then I sliced the bananas and then fried them in the oil.
-Becky cut up the sweet bananas and fried hers in the small skillet and then put them in a bowl with sugar poured over the top.
-A great commotion comes from the living room area, and mum comes in with Meg in her arms and Meg's face is bleeding and there is a crowd of kids all around her and dad is there and Meg is crying and mum is telling someone to get a rag and dad is telling someone else to get some ice and lots of people are wondering what the heck just happened.
-I was one of these, and also looking for a rag.
-Apparently there was a little fight and a door got in the way and now Meg's going to have a black eye for a bit.
-I return to my tajatas, which are getting rather burnt, and mum puts arnica on Meg's face, and a certain child is crying and feeling extremely evil for causing this pain.
(Note: excuse you. Stop wondering which child it was. What are you, mean? Morbid? Cruel?Something else starting with M?)
I dropped more banana into the scalding oil and get a drop on the tip of my finger.
I also thought about covering the eggs when I remembered the tajadas and rushed over.
I stubbed my toe on the way over on the cement step.
I recently stubbed it, and it was bleeding like crazy.
So I screech
My siblings show their sympathy by laughing.
I laugh too, and then frantically dump the tajadas into the aluminum pan.
A minute or so later, I feel something sticky and wet on my foot.
I look down, all prepared to be stepping on avocado or banana or butter.
But there's not really anything, I lift my foot and put it somewhere else, and see a tiny puddle of red liquid.
Then I laugh and tell the kids I murdered my foot again, and can they watch the tajadas?
Everyone is busy in their own pursuits and don't answer, so I yell it again and then hobble to the bathroom to bind up my foot.
After I clean it, Becky brings me a band aid, and then I return to the kitchen.
“Did you guys watch the tajadas?” I ask
“No!” “Yes!” Numerous people call out joyfully at the same time.
The pan has new tajatas in it.
Then I look in the pan and see a pile of burnt tajatas in one corner.
“We told you we didn't watch it.”
“I thought you were kidding!”
A bit later, Rebeckah’s foot gets burnt by oil, and Peter scoops her up and carries her to the dining room to get ice on it.
Isaac wants to tell mum all about everyone's injuries but I tell him not to. She has enough with laundry to do, Meg to take care of, children to feed, school to administer and she probably has a headache!
But when she comes downstairs, Isaac tells her immediately.
The niece of a certain monk (in a certain Abbey, in Kansas City) lives here in Nicaragua, and she came to visit us.
She is a nice girl. She has short curly blond hair up in a ponytail. She is wearing her uniform for her job- which is teaching, incidentally.
We shook hands at the introductory state of our encounter.
“I'm Sarah.” She says. She has a nice firm grip, but not too hard. She seems completely at ease with all of us, yet a little part of her is awed I think.
I tend to have that effect on people.
She has a nice smile and she doesn't laugh often, but when she does, you notice.
And it's not that it's a loud laugh or peculiar in any way. It's just… true.
She's completely comfortable with herself and I like that. She isn't necessarily pretty, or ugly but the way she carries herself and the way she acts around us makes her attractive.
She would have no trouble finding a nice man- and probably a sarcastic gentleman at that!
We sit in the living room and talk.
They exchange backstory and she asks questions right to the point. She doesn't best around the bush, this girl.
When dad makes a joke (the actual joke escapes my memory at this time) she snorts and slaps her knee and I feel like cheering.
I love snort-laughers and knee-slappers!
They're my kind of people.
The kind of people who love a good joke and usually tell the best jokes and even if they're not funny- you laugh because you have no choice.
It's a contagion.
She loves dad's home-roasted coffee, and drinks two whole cups.
I watched her closely to see if she would just pretend to like it, but she drank it all and had a second cup with supper.
She is an open book at times, yet I feel like she has a deeper heart and understanding of the world and it's wiles.
She's quite a chum. I have a feeling this won't be our last meeting.