The other evening while I was at Agape Orphanage, a few people from a church close by came and sang songs with all the kids and told a story from the Bible. Myo Aung Oo, one of the boys pictured on the right (below), was playing his air guitar like nobodies business. Afterwords I asked him if he had a guitar. He said they did but it was broken. He started to explain but couldn't find the words in English so he said, "I will show you." We went to his/their room/hall and he grabbed the guitar. It was missing the D string and the tuning peg for the D string. I asked if they had the peg and someone popped up with it. So we needed screws and new strings. Let's do this. I told the boys I would do my best to fix it. Today my friend and I headed out on bicycles to the orphanage. It's about 24 minutes from my house. En route to Agape, we checked a hardware store and they directed me to Tesco Locus Extra. It's a huge store that is basically the Walmart of Thailand. By the way, for all the Washingtonians out there, here's to us.
On the lower level they have a cinema, KFC, a bank, more fancy restaurants, and among other things a guitar shop. It's a stark contrast to what is in a 10 kilometer radius to the store. Hundreds of thousands of migrant workers, refugees, orphans, the Thai-Burmese boarder.
They had what we needed and the guy even let me barrow his precision screwdriver for the afternoon. We arrived just as they were finishing up some soccer and were starting to eat lunch. When they were done, we screwed the tuning peg on and then put all new strings on. Ahh yes. Stoked. I tuned it up and strummed a few chords. I handed it over to Salomon and he played a few chords. We encouraged them to sing something but Solomon was maybe a bit shy and handed it back to me. I played one song and then gave it back him. We encouraged again and believe me they wanted to. They started out with a song in Burmese which and then kept it going with some mixed language songs, Christian and other wise. They played and sung maybe eight or nine songs and each one very passionate and from deep souls.
We moved to the garden project and started pulling up plastic bags and so on. A few days before, the kids worked together to clear and clean up one large area and one small area for gardens. The larger area looked ideal but once we started turning over the dirt, we found plastic bags everywhere among other bits of trash. We even found a few Lego peices. Once we started pulling the trash out it didn't smell very good so we decided to wait a year or so to plant that one. We moved up to the smaller spot. It's more flat there and definitely less trash buried. Using the hoes, the older boys over turned the dirt while the younger ones pulled out bits of trash here and there. It looks really nice now. It does need a fence though to keep the dogs and chickens out. Bamboo might work if we can find some. Maybe that will happen tomorrow or the next day. One day at a time.