This month everyone in the entire school went to retreat- but not all at once, thank goodness! They went in groups by grades. Cerritos had 5 campamentos and Marangatu had 3 (because they´re smaller). Some of the same grades from the different schools went together.
I went to a combined camp with the 4th, 5th, and 6th graders from both Marangatu and Cerritos Schools. Sorry to say, our team was the calm, boring type, starting with me and my co-leader! The other teachers were so competitive it was scary. They had group cheers that you hear at futbol games and they would jump up and down like a mosh pit.
Our team was in last place the first day. But suddenly, the tables turned and we went from last place to second place by scoring points for coming to service on time, being in line for meals, and reciting the Bible verse! Then the other teachers started grumbling and getting ugly(!) about how we were able to jump from last to second place! So on the last day, our team came together with great dignity and defended our place with fierce enthusiasm in the last competition! In the end, our group actually won 1st place! It was an unexpected triumph!
Overall, that camp was great for bonding with the students and being part of the school. It went smoothly for the most part except for kids breaking things, like a toilet tank and 2 church pews. In Paraguay, kids have the mob mentality. When one starts chanting, they all start, and when one starts pounding the desk, they all start pounding. It´s called, ¨golpeando.¨ Golpeando is how they broke two church pew shelves. That was sort of the main dynamics of my campamento experience.
¨Samuel¨ (Shin) went to campamento with the 7th, 8th, and 9th grade and his experience was also great. The students were motivated and friendly. The only things that required supervision was keeping time. During the evening worship service around 20 students rededicated or accepted Christ.
He also got jumped under sleeping cushions and then body slammed with knees and elbows by students. He ended up him hitting his head somewhere or by someone and getting a bump on his head. His group name was BO HA PEUH which means 3 in Garani. His group placed BO HA PEUH, so although they did not win first, they were happy with their BO HA PEUH.
SHIN´s account: On the morning of the second and final day, someone had brought fire crackers and at 5:30 in the morning decided to set off two of them. It came consecutively. I woke up with the first blast quick enough to see the second one flying with a tail of fire and then explode into pieces of fading gold. I started laughing really out loud because I thought it was funny. I laughed so loud that the principal (director) came over and asked me is everything ok. I told him I saw the ¨bomba¨ and thought it was funny and he said . . everything is ok. I´m sorry. Go to sleep. He probably thought I was crazy. It turns out the bomb didn´t wake up the studnets, but my laugh did and they were complaining to me that I woke them up too early.
Tomorrow the most difficult group is going to campamento. These are the ¨Bachilerato¨- 10th, 11th, 12th. During chapel today, the Pastor asked for hands of whose going and less than a third raised their hands. Many have had difficult home lives. Last year they destroyed a bunch of desks, unhinged and destroyed doors, and etched bad words in the chalkboards at Cerritos school. Of course the worst of them have long been expelled, but the rebellion, and the apathetic attitude still remain.
Pictures of campamento to follow!