Quechua praise song

Annie and Sarah dressed in traditional Quechua gear.

Sarah and Annie dressed in traditional Quechua gear.

The following is a song in Quechua, one of the tongues proclaiming the glory of God around His throne, but a tongue which on Earth is a challenge for outsiders. Before moving to Peru, I thought that Quechua had something to do with Spanish, some unique dialect, but it is not so. They throw in lots of Spanish because they lack the word in Quechua, so a person can pick out a word or two now and then. Many people have lived here for years without learning much Quechua. However, one of our friends, a Washingtonian who lives in Abancay, can speak it fluently, even with the clicks, and it is so impressive.

The only words I know in this song are Dios, God, which is the same in Spanish, and Taytáy, which Sarah taught me is “father.” I can guess that the last word has something to do with service. Imagine it being sung in a whiny nasal voice with a lilting rhythm.  We hear a lot more Quechua music now that we live in town, and it is an acquired taste.  I’m glad to know it pleases God’s ears.

Yachachiway, Dios Taytáy

Sumaq qellqaykimanta,

Runamasiyman willamunaypaq

Kaypin kani, Dios Taytáy

Sonqoy ukhuman

K’anchaykamuway

Khuyakuyta yapaway

Sumaq simiykimanta,

Cheqneqniymanpas yachachinaypaq

Kawsayniytan qomuyki,

Qanpa munasqaykipi

Kawsanaykama servikusqayki

Taller de Cultura (Culture Workshop)

A couple weeks ago we celebrated a Cultural Workshop at Colegio Diospi Suyana.  For us parents with was a welcome respite from hours of homework every night.  The schedule for our kids is Peruvian classes from 7:45 AM to 12:50 PM.  Then they have an English speakers class, which is taught by Allison.  In this class they learn American and world history, English grammar and spelling (spelling is a real challenge for the kids learning in two languages), English literature, and Spanish as a second language.  They also have a devotional time.  That class ends at 3 PM, and our kids come home for a rest, and then start a couple hours of homework.  The length of homework is longer for our kids because of the translation work that needs to be done to do it in the first place.  Our kids do not get as much done at school because they don’t always understand what they are seeing on the page or the instructions they get in the book.  So they come home with more homework, and we sit down and try and translate and work through it.  There is a lot of Spanish / English dictionary work during this time.  Well, during the Culture Workshop week we did not have homework, so right off the bat we were all happy.  All the teachers of the school chose a topic area, and the kids were free to join whichever topic interested them for the week.  David joined a project on Chile.  There were some seminary students from Chile volunteering at the hospital, and they helped the teacher instruct the students in regards to Chilean culture, history, geography, music, etc.  David especially enjoyed creating a model of the topography of Chile, and he enjoyed doing research to create a PowerPoint discussing all the great things about that long, skinny country.

David and his friend John Paul in front of their display of Chile.

David and his friend John Paul in front of their display of Chile.

Annie and Peter were excited to join a group studying Sayhuite and Incan history.  Sayhuite is an Incan ruin about 30 minutes from Curahuasi as you ascend the mountain pass to travel to Albancay.  They enjoyed a field trip to the ruins, and then enjoyed creating a model of Sayhuite to show the parents on Friday night as we toured the school and saw all the work that had been done that week.  Annie especially enjoyed welcoming guests to the room, stating please enjoy the model without touching it.  “Bienvenidos a la maqueta de Sayhuite, sin tocar, por favor!”

Annie and Peter in front of their display of Saywite, an incan ruin just up the road from where we live.

Annie and Peter in front of their display of Saywite, an incan ruin just up the road from where we live.  Click on the pictures below to see them larger.

Poor Sarah was sick for half the week, so she did not get to participate to the full, but she chose a workshop on Austrian and German culture.  They did research on Austria and wrote letters to volunteers from Austria that had served in Curahuasi in the past.  Sarah especially enjoyed sharing some food from Austria with us on our tour.  Sorry, no pictures.  The night ended with a dinner where all the different cultures represented cooked food to sell in the lobby.  There was Peruvian food from all the geographical regions, as well as American food and German food.  We represented America with apple pie and chocolate chip cookies.  It does not get more American than that!  It was a great week, a lot of fun for the kids, and we were especially proud of the effort and progress that the school is making for the sake of our kids, the town of Curahuasi, the mission of Christ in Apurimac, and especially for the sake of the education of the children of Curahuasi.

Serving dinner.  They like boiled oats in the Apurimac and they eat them with lots of water a little water depending on the meal.  This is with a medium amount of water, and it is basically like a rice pudding or oat pudding desert.

Serving dinner. They like boiled grains in the Apurimac and they eat them with lots of water a little water depending on the meal. This is with a medium amount of water, and it is basically like a rice pudding or oat pudding desert.