As some of you may know, the first three months of the year were full with work teams that came to help remodel the old school. The first group came in the end of January, while mom and dad were back in the states for a funeral. However plans didn’t go as expected! We didn’t get the work permit in time, so they came over without certainty of what they’d be doing. They worked on the big house a couple days but then APSARA said that it needed to be stopped.
You might not remember, but in March of 2018, we had an IGO team that came to help remodel an old house in the village. But the house ended up having termites, so it was just left as it was. A while back we got a permit to build a house on it, and since the permit was almost expired, we decided to do that instead. Due to the interruption of plans, the first team only got the foundation laid down and some of the sides put up.
The second team got here the day before Luke and Steph did. The team was lots bigger than the first one. We had the team over for supper a couple times. Sunday evenings were the biggest crowd of foreigners we’ve had over at one time for a long time! Our holdeman friends had family here since they just had twins. All together it was about 40 people that crowded into our living room! We took advantage of it and spent an evening singing! It is so nice to be able to sing English songs with so many people! One other highlight was having other American girls to play volleyball with. You rarely ever see Khmer girls play volleyball, so I enjoy every chance I get to play…
One morning some of the ladies from church and the women on the team got together to make donuts, eat lunch, and have a small bible study. Sounds of voices and and laughter came out of the kitchen. Eager children sampled the donuts. Well, devouring might be more factual! While Ruth was making lunch, a couple concerned ladies told Kompeak that they’re worried about how Ruth was making the rice. “She turned the burner off and the rice is still wet and soft! And she put seasoning in it too!” Kompeak then explained to Ruth that, after the rice is cooked, they turn the heat and let it cook another 10 minutes. They say that if its still wet, they get a stomachache after eating it. They liked the food, but they were still puzzled why you would season the rice if it’s not for fried rice!
I found the most out of the third team since Luke and Steph weren’t here. I helped a bit with painting, spent an afternoon with them at the water reservoir. We played lots and lots of dominion! We also took them rat chasing one day. It was really sad to see them go!
Thankfully it wasn’t as hard going adjusting as I was anticipating! While It was so refreshing to have other Americans close for a while, but it is also nice to be back to day-to-day life!
~Heather for the Helmuths~