It’s just been two days alone with Tia and blood has already been shed. My own blood. The kids are lucky that my heart is full of compassion and patience or else the walls could very well be stained crimson by now. You never know how much you’re going to miss your partner until she’s gone. Obviously I figured I would miss Sarah because it’s nice to have at her attempts to understand or even speak recognizable Spanish and it was just good to have someone to talk to in English knowing no one could understand our conversations. We both worked hard and we both did the best we could with the kids but I never even realized how much we both did until it’s just been me alone. Kids are quite fickle. Kids that don’t listen very well are even fickler. At times I thought there were moments of peace in the war between me and the children, but it seems that that may have just been my mind playing tricks on me. I fell for the classic “Let the children use random pretend plastic medical tools that have been in their mouth and other orifices most likely and have them stick them into your mouth to give you a faux dentist check up” trick. Who else under then Dr. Justyn who would conduct the experience? I’m not sure what dentistry tool looks like a pie spatula, or even what field of medicine would use that at all but hey, maybe doctors need strangely shaped butter knives from time to time. Plastic pie butter knives that are sharper than actual butter knives! I’m also not sure what Justyn thought would happen if he kept rubbing the sharp edge over and over my lower gums though he did get an answer. Blood happened. Some may ask, “Why Hank, why didn’t you try to stop that?” I did. Of course I did. Except his damn assistant seemed to think my resisting was a good time to shove three other things into my mouth and forcibly gag me. His assistant was two years old. As I did mention to Sarah last week, I really wish I could go back in time and actually see myself (as an outsider observing) during these formative years. Because I think we both seem to think that kids can be kind of dicks from time to time and that we were simply infallible. I imagine that’s not the case but until someone sends me home movies proving otherwise I’m going to stand by it. I don’t mean to focus just on these aspects of the kids except for that it makes for more interesting stories. I could write on about how we enjoyed coloring together, or just sitting on a stool one little girl grabbed my arm and cuddled with me, or how I can just sit down and children will run and jump into my lap. They’re good kids. They’re cute kids. They just aren’t that way 24/7 though again no kid is unless that kid is a robot that’s a successor to a Stepford Wife. It’s just been a little more difficult working alone and that was to be expected. On the plus side, I only have nine more days doing it. I like the kids, I like the tia, I just like the camaraderie of being two people who are giving it their all but not entirely sure what they’re doing either. It makes for good fun. After this, I move onto an orphanage and during that time eighteen new volunteers will come as well. I’ll be working with someone again and hopefully our struggle is as enjoyable as the first was. Until then, I’ll be busting my booty to make sure these kids remember me in a positive light even if it’s for a week before they inevitably forget me because I was replaced by someone new. Still. That’s something. So it goes.