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A Feast For All

After our visit to Ancocagua School with the AAVia Foundation to evaluate the progress of the ‘Clean Hands, Healthy School’ programme was coming to an end something quite special happened, that I felt must be shared on my blog.

Having watched the hand washing classes, demonstrations and distribution of hygiene packs we began saying our goodbyes. At that moment, one women in the centre of the school’s playing field unfolded an aguayo cloth. Like a game of pass the parcel she continued unfolding layers of the typically Bolivian material until a bundle of cooked potatoes revealed themselves.

A teacher at the school informed us that the local parents had prepared a lunch for the Charity’s visit. As the information filtered through the team another aguayo cloth had been unravelled, followed by another and another and another. We watched in awe as parents nudged their ways forward to deposit their contribution. Masses of different varieties¬†of potatoes, broccoli, eggs, cheese, sauces and more began to stretch the whole length of the school’s yard.¬†The teachers at the school, on the impoverished Bolivian high plains, had no idea that the parents had prepared such a feast for their foreign visitors.

Sitting down on the yard with the children, teachers, students and parents the smorgasbord of traditional Bolivian cuisine before us was incredible. Cholitas handed me different foods to try along with Mocochinchi (Dried Peach Juice) and we indulged in not only the food, but the atmosphere such a huge gesture had conjured.

It was an amazing show of gratitude that touched us all.

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