What else to do but dance?

This morning I purchased supplies for a group of refugees who seem to have vanished into thin air. I’m not sure where they have gone or why but they are no longer where they were yesterday when they received blankets and food. I spent time instead with other new arrivals.

Thanks to Air Canada, who donated excess baggage to our last visitor, and our newest volunteer, we had a surplus of toys this year from the Birthday Party. So today I took some of those toys out to children who have been displaced. I thought it would be nice for them to have something small and light to hold onto, even when everything else is uneasy and uncertain.

I had all the beanie babies in my backpack and I asked the children to come forward one by one with their eyes closed and hands outstretched. I pulled a beanie baby from the bag and put it in the waiting hands. Each one was a surprise and a delight to all the gathered children, since there are beanie baby copies of all kinds of animals. The children tried to teach me the names of the animals in Burmese but they faltered at the word for sloth. There was some kind of large beaked bird that threw them as well. One little girl got a turtle which she stroked and petted and carried around with her for the rest of the afternoon like it was her baby.

The feeling at the site was tense. All kinds of news and rumors are coming in about what is going to happen across the river. People are afraid and worried. There is no school, so the children have lost their routine. I felt the worry creeping over me too. It feels like a deadly calm before another horrible storm. And in the face of all the tension and worry and concern, what else is there really to do but dance?

The dancing was totally crazy and out of control. There was screaming going on (yes that is “Whoomp there it is” you can hear being chanted over and over again) and a lot of running around, and also just a little bit of joy in a very stressful time. I particularly enjoy the end of the second video.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OEtbPNyGvJU&fs=1&hl=en_US] [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhfsaBvnM4U&fs=1&hl=en_US]

1 Reply to "What else to do but dance?"

  • Jen
    November 22, 2010 (5:13 pm)

    Watching these there’s nothing to do but smile 🙂 Thanks for bringing a little light into an uncertain time for these kids!

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