Friday, November 28, 2008

A Morning in Pignon

1:30 a.m.

Bark, bark, bark. I roll over in bed and cover my ears, hoping the noise will stop. Then after several minutes of hearing the incessant barking, I groan, roll over and push open the side of the mosquito net. There’s no power on, so I reach clumsily for my flashlight and then stumble my way into the kitchen to find the pan of leftover sphagetti noodles that I had put on the counter the night before. The light from the flashlight is dim and as I open the door and step outside into the cool darkness, it does nothing to lighten my path. Blindly I make my way to the outside camp kitchen area, and finally my flashlight illuminates a small, pathetic dog. I dump, the pan of old noodles in front of him, tell him to stop barking, so we can sleep and then make my way back to our “camp house”. I shut the flashlight off and crawl into bed, then I close my eyes tightly and listen. Quiet, not a sound can be heard. I sigh with relief and then drift back to sleep.

4:30 a.m.

Bang, bang, bang. Jayden is awake and is banging the sides of his pack and play to make sure everyone knows it. I pretend I don’t hear, but after a little while I crawl out from under our mosquito net again, and carefully fold open his. “What do you want Jayden?” I say. He looks up at me hopefully and says “ba”, meaning bottle. I grab the flashlight again, stumble into the kitchen, grab a bag of water and search for the can of milk powder. I give him his bottle and he lets out a contented sigh “aah”. After he’s finished he calls for me again, so I take him out grab some blankets and cuddle with him on our makeshift couch in the kitchen. I hug his little body close and sing softly to him in Dutch, till he falls asleep again. I lay him back down and crawl back in bed.


Cock-a doodle do.. Cock-a doodle do... Roosters are crowing, Bark, bark, bark… Dogs are barking.. Swish, swish, someone is sweeping outside our window. Bang, bang, bang, Jayden is awake and ready to get out. Since Jason took him out the last two mornings, it’s my turn today. I quickly put on his shorts, boots, and jacket and then get dressed myself. Once I step outside all thought of returning to bed leave me. The blue sky beckons, the sun kisses my cheeks and the breeze gently pushes the hair out of my face. I smile and look at Jayden and as I hold his precious little hand we walk side by side to the meadow. The goats are excited to see us and we pick hand fulls of grass which Jayden holds carefully to their mouths. Every now and then a tugging contest ensues and I smile. Then together we hike to the river. The path is small so Jayden walks up front of me and touches the plants that are leaning onto the trail. We carefully make our way down to the river and stare into the fast flowing water. The vegetation is amazing. A half an hour later we make our way back our stomaches rumbling.


Breakfast consists of a peanut butter and jam sandwich. We finally got a stove we could use but we don’t have any pans. After breakfast we feed the chickens and then look for one of the camp workers. In broken Creole and sign language we explain we need a pan, finally he understands and brings us three.


Jayden is in bed and we are studying. We are learning body parts in Creole and are having a lot of fun. Who knew that your tongue was actually your lung? And your chest your stomach? And your neck was a koe (dutch for cow)? We study till lunch time, and that ends a beautiful morning in Pignon.


  1. Hello Jason, Will and Jayden;

    Happy to hear that you are all feeling better. I love your writing Will, at least I think it's yours. You should write a book, I love it. Sounds like life is a bit more laid back over there, and there's probably no overweight people there either. We are thinking of you a lot, God bless you and keep you all!
    Love Henry and Jenny

  2. mom and dad
    Was good to hear from you again. Sorry we didn't get to talk to you Will but Jay said you were doing better. I love your writing Will, you must be in bed early to make up for the early mornings.Is Jayden still eating good. Do you find that it is more relaxed living out there? Do you have any electricity at all? Is Jayden able to communicate with the other children okay.
    Love you lots and missing you,

  3. Boy oh boy! How do you get enough sleep? Yikes!!! What an early morning! I'd better not complain if Luke needs his soother put in at 6:30! Hope all is well! We check frequently for the updates and really enjoying them! Take care. Love steph H and family

  4. Hello,
    Great story writing Will, unfortanely for you it is not just a story but real life. I had to smile when I read about Jayden and his tactics. We sure do miss him! And you guys too! It was great seeing you and talking to Jay last week! Tais was watching too and was very excited to see Uncle Jay! Take care,
    Love Anthony and Sherilyn and kids

  5. 1) Hi Henry & Jenny! Finally I have a chance to respond to some comments. I'm glad you like the writing. Yes, it's mine, I love to write! Life is definetely more laid back here. As for overweight people, no you don't really see them here. I feel like I have lost 10 pounds already, but we don't have a scale so I would never know. Thanks for thinking about us and leaving comments. Love Will
    2)Hi Mom & Dad. I would love to talk to you guys, so next time you phone demand to talk to me too ;) otherwise Jason will hog the phone the entire time! We sometimes go to bed earlier, but Jayden's been sleeping through the night now that we gave him another room to sleep in and the dog has stopped barking, so it's been a lot better. Jayden is still eating good. He loves his bottle, and has been eating plenty of fruit and bread. Life is more relaxed but also can get busy since cooking, laundry, bathing Jayden etc all takes much longer. We do have electricity. Usually from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. The rest of the time it's light enough so we don't need it. Jayden has lots of fun playing with all the other kids and is growing up way to fast! Since all the kids are older then he is, he thinks he is older too.. My little baby.. Oh well. Love you and miss you too.
    3)Hi Steph. Nice to hear from you again. We had some early mornings but now things are better. Jayden sleeps in a different room, and the dogs and stuff stopped barking. As for the roosters, we are so used to them we hardly hear them anymore.I'm glad you enjoy the updates.
    4) Hi Sher. It was great hearing you voice last week! I'm glad you like the stories. I kind of enjoy writing about real life things. Whenever things are happening, my head is spinning, and I'm trying to remember everything in exact detail so I can right it down. It's also a great way to kind of digest all the changes in our lives. If I write it down I don't have to try to remember everything for the next 3 years.
    Kiss Tais & sweet little Kales for me. Love Will