Watoto: what a 24 hours!

The Watoto choir arrived on Friday lunchtime and left on Saturday lunchtime. The concert at our church was on Friday evening. Our time with them was brief, but they have left a huge imprint on our hearts.

On Friday afternoon when we arrived at church, the choir had not long been there and the kids were generally really shy and quiet. They did some sound checking and their team of Aunties and Uncles were setting up for the evening event. Little Legs stayed very close by me, with her hands over her ears and a look of intensity in her eyes. Our other girls were helping a friend of ours who was responsible for overseeing all of the practical arrangements for the choir’s visit.

Big Girl was working the adults in the room, offering drinks. Happy Dreamer was watching (and very quickly helping) a couple of the adults who were setting up the merchandise tables. Little Bud was sitting with Mr Six, watching the sound and lighting checks.

The choir children gradually began to settle, as their team of adults played with them and had some fun together. By tea time, our girls were more settled and less anxious about their visitors. We served them their tea of spaghetti bol, chilli, rice and pasta and the girls laughed and had some fun with their guests.

At this point, I asked Mr Six if he had seen Little Legs. I suddenly realised I wasn’t sure where she had gone. And then she appeared at the hatch with her new friend, Uncle Mark (one of the Watoto team). He was laughing with her and helped her to get her food, took her to a table and sat with her and some of the other choir members. She was relaxed, not ticcing, just the occasional look over to smile and wave.

If you read our blog regularly, you will have seen my previous post about how last week was not going so well due to Little Legs’ astronomical anxiety about our house hosting two of the kids and a chaperone.

I wish I could post the pictures of her with all of her new friends! She is currently flat out in bed, sleeping off her amazing two days of making new friends, dancing, singing, running around playing hide and seek and generally having a blast. Yesterday lunchtime when the group got on their coach to leave for their next destination, Little Legs did a run of the aisle getting high fives from them all! We have pictures of her with so many of the children and adults.
She loved the concert and jumped and sang along. She sat transfixed as they performed with such amazing energy. She gave and received so many hugs and high fives. She chose her Watoto bracelet and has not taken it off since.
Our overnight guests were amazing – Auntie Maria (one of the support team of adults) and two amazing girls aged 11 and 8. Our girls had a breakfast time game of Pick up sticks and then Cranium Hullaballoo with them yesterday morning. It was such a laugh watching these kids who grew up worlds apart, crawling round on their hands and knees trying to get their noses onto the blue triangle pad!

There has been much sadness and not a little lethargy in the Six household since Saturday lunchtime, when we said our goodbyes. The girls have wonderful memories, lots of photos and videos and the blessings of an incredible 24 hours with the joy that was our Watoto choir. So thankful for the opportunity to host and hang out with them.

And boy has Little Legs been in the mix with the rest of them!

5 thoughts on “Watoto: what a 24 hours!

  1. What a transformation a few days can bring. I hope that this joyful interaction will do great things for her confidence and self-esteem.

    1. Thank you Uncle Peter! It’s been interesting that we haven’t even seen much fall out following their departure either, which is what we were expecting. I definitely think that she watches the girls and their responses very closely, so seeing them just enter into every opportunity over the time the choir were here was such good role modelling for her.

  2. You were a blessing too to us. I miss you all and am so glad that my friend is happy and lively. I will always remember you for your love and care. Thanks for the great work you doing. God bless you.
    Uncle Mark

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