I did it! I went in and worked with the kids in the group home. Yes, the very same ones I was contemplating the pros and cons of using carving tools. I was completely wiped out afterwards, but more from just trying to communicate for a few hours in German than from actual fear.
The weekend before, there was a fair or "Killianis" as it's known here. And in a really stupid and spontaneous attempt to earn these kids' affection I had a tattoo air brushed on my neck. You'd think I'd be embarrassed to type that sentence, but at this point in my blog who even cares anymore? Why hold back now...?
I chose a big chinese graphic that "looked tough" although according to the carney's translation poster it supposedly meant "LOVE."
And yes, that is a pretzel necklace I'm wearing!
The day I was scheduled to go in the tattoo was already flaking off and looking sadly fake and even more pathetic than the fresh version. So I forced the hubby to scrub it off while wondering inside how the heck I was going to get through the morning.
Parking in this particular area is a nightmare. One of my friends used to live in the neighborhood and she lovingly referred to is as "Scrotsville" which is apparently a derivative of "scrotum" and "village." It cracked me up as I was trying to figure out how to get my car parallel parked backwards up a hill, as well as staggering the curb (the streets are so narrow there the signs tell you to park with two of your tires actually up onto the sidewalk so that only half of your car remains on the road). I actually took a few deep breaths and had to remind myself that I used to live in London for cripes sake and that I should really pull myself together.
My feelings of triumph after my impossible park job evaporated as I climbed up the hill and noticed the fence next to the building had actual barbed wire. I wasn't certain that it was the fence that belonged to the juvenile home and convinced myself it was probably just some super freaky-ass paranoid neighbors. I mean really. Who knows? The world is nuts.
So I got in and had a tour. The place is really nice. I mean I suppose it beats the hell out of jail. And I only lost it for a few seconds when I saw where the kids actually have to sleep at night. I just gritted my teeth and pretended to have sand in my eye.
The art project itself went smoothly. I had them cut up paper bags and use one side to fold into a mini journal. (An old trick from my art homies)! Then we painted them up using credit cards and other recycled garbage. They were totally into it, and they didn't give me any greif let alone initiate an attempt to harvest my organs. We're going forward with this, once a week. I'm pretty psyched they accept me even without my bad-ass tat!
*Note to dad: if you are reading this post, the tattoo is not real. It was air brushed. I know I'm pushing 40 and you would still throw me over your knee and spank me for this. It was fun while it lasted but I promise not to get a permanent one! Anywhere. Ever. Luv, tj