Leaving Fabiola

Trip Start Feb 07, 2006
1
12
38
Trip End Aug 07, 2006


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Flag of Paraguay  ,
Sunday, February 19, 2006


Make sure to check out Andrea's Travel Blog for more stories and photos of our trip!


Sad goodbyes

We drove up to Edith´s home in the morning to say our last goodbyes.

This morning would be our last visit and we knew this would be the last time we would see each other. After spending 8 days with the family, we´d grown very close and we weren't looking forward to saying adios one last time.

When we pulled up to the home where the family waited, Fabiola was sad, I could tell. She wasn´t her usual self and shuffled slowly to the barbed fence to see us arrive.

¨Ola¨ we greeted the family.

They´d pulled the chairs into a circle under a large tree where we always sat and talked in the shade. Fabiola crept up onto on my lap, unusually quietly.

Only a few minutes later, while the grown-ups chatted, she disappeared into her home and reappeared quickly, smiling, clutching a small piece of paper cut out in the shape of a heart and handed it to me.

I tried my best to read the Spanish words out loud. As I read, I looked over to Gustavo for translation.

I didn't understand all of the words but mid-way through, Fabiola, her chin already tucked in leaped into my arms and buried her face on my neck.

I didn't need to wait for the translation, I knew what the letter said by the look on her face and her reaction.

I picked her up and gave her a big hug which in a strange way meant both thank you and goodbye.

Fabiola squeezed tightly. Her mother came around behind me to see if her daughter was alright. I couldn't see Fabiola´s face anymore but her mother came back to sit down and was crying. I knew that her mother wasn´t the only one crying now.

I flipped Fabiola around, cradled her in my arms and slowly walked away from the others. I have to admit it was a pretty emotional moment and I tried my best to hold back the tears myself with mild success.

I am such a suck.

I rocked her a little and tried my best to get her to smile. I shoved my face into her belly and belted out a huge blow which made her laugh and almost made her forget about the whole moment we´d all just shared.

We sat back down and played for a while. The laughter washed away the thought that we were leaving soon and all seemed normal for a few minutes.

I was wearing a large wide-brimmed hat we´d given them and we played around a little. We made silly faces while Fabiola snuck under the rim and cuddled up nose to nose.

¨I think she is in love¨ Gustavo said.

So were we, this was going to be tough.

¨Ok, we should go¨ Gustovo said reluctantly.

¨Who wants to say it because it isn't going to be me¨ I replied in English knowing that no one would be able to understand my comment.

Gustavo took the honors.

I asked him to say some nice things about the family and to tell them that we were very happy to see that Fabiola had such a loving environment to grow up in.

Fabiola gave me a big hug and started crying again. I put her back down, thanked them all again and we waved our last goodbyes.

It was a very emotional goodbye, and one which I don't think I had completely anticipated.

I took the long ride back to pull myself together and we headed back to Ascuncion for lunch with the Plan team to discuss our trip before finally leaving for Iguazu Falls.
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Comments

whereshegoes
whereshegoes on

Tear Jerker
That's beautiful Luc. I read this once:

This is not the end. This is not even the beginning of the end. It is, instead, the end of a beginning.

Thank you for sharing.

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