Dear Friends,

Re-reading my notes about our time in Myanmar I reminisce about what an amazing time we had there once again.

We flew into Yangon from Bangkok to see a flooded country. This year’s rainy season had been very extreme and we quickly discovered that we would be able to take neither bus nor train to reach the orphanage in Mawlamyine. The authorities decided to re-open the unused tiny regional airport and so we booked tickets, feeling pretty nervous about taking an internal flight. We heaved a sigh of relief when our plane came to a halt on the wet tarmac. After collecting our luggage off a hand pulled wooden cart in the pouring rain, we stood in the mud waiting & wondering where the children were? Finally they arrived, having also been delayed by the floods and it was just so wonderful to see their excited faces and receive their big hugs.

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Hospitality always comes first and so we had to eat. They always make a special effort to find us interesting local foods

Now that the children are older, the orphanage is quiet during the day as they all go to school. We cannot break the rules and take them out, so our extended outings are reduced to the weekend only. Nevertheless they were proud to have us pick them up from school, show us their classrooms and introduce us to their teachers. We spend the latter part of the days together. This year we brought along some classic educational games  and we also taught some of the older ones to play chess. We were surprised at how quickly they developed skill.  We were delighted to learn that the oldest girl had excelled at school and will start Law studies at the town’s university. Everyone was so proud of her and we hope she will be an inspiration to the others….

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We always go with the flow. One afternoon we had decided to take the smaller children to the park, but before we knew it, everyone wanted to come along and we ended up squeezing 28 of the children into our jeep! They really are so so funny. At the park it was lovely to watch them organize to play games where all of them were included. We could see how bonded they all are and more and more with us also.

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Once again, we extend an invitation to you all to pay them a visit.

As always they manage amazingly with the money we bring them and are content with little. We always accompany them once at dawn as they go on their Alms round to collect food from the town’s people. It is especially exciting to see the older ones maturing and continuing to go to school. From the bottom of our hearts we thank you for your continued support of this rewarding project, which would not be possible without your help.

 

Mary Pat & Raoul

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