Greetings friends! Hope you all had an enjoyable weekend. I'm sitting here enjoying a rare warm and sunny afternoon looking out at the very sweet little Browns Island, the small grass-covered volcano out in the bay, and listening to Trey and his friends who came home from school with him. He asked last week if some of his friends could come here and play soccer for a while, but I wasn't sure who might show up until 3:15 when they came walking in.
Today we have Josh, from Auckland, whose father owns a bait shop that Dennis and Trey frequent and also Doug who moved here from Sweden with his family nine years ago. He was just saying "I like Pringles" in Swedish for us. I just love that my kids are meeting these people from so, so far from our home in Ohio and learning about them and what they like and trying new sports and new foods and just learning that things can be entirely different, and yet still very much the same.
I also love that so many of the kids' names are so uncommon to us: Lily, Beatrice, Axl, Elizabeth-Esther, Mathilda, Fiona, Ursula, Denham... and that they have morning tea every day at 10:30 and run around most of the day in bare feet and that there is a group of dogs tied to the school gates every afternoon, waiting for their kids to come out. The boys that we've met so far have been so open and talkative and polite. I'm not sure if it's the accent that makes them sound so grown up, but they really are just lovely to talk with.
I took this before Trey could throw anything at me. He's no longer a willing or even neutral participant in my photos. He now hates anything having to do with my camera. As you can see, the iPad, which just became available here a couple of weeks ago, is a big hit with the new friends.
This gave me a good laugh -- when the three boys were sitting here a while ago eating mandarins and Pringles, they were talking sports (what else!) and they weren't sure what the NBA was so they asked Trey to name some good NBA players. Trey (true Clevelander) said, "Well NOT LeBron!" This was met with blank stares. "Who's LeBron?" they said. Exactly!