…three, two, one fingers showing.
And then the camera was rolling.
We’d already been in the TVNZ studio for an hour, wandered around the bowels of the building, had make-up done in front of very bright lights and enormous mirrors, leaving the children to chat with whoever was waiting to go on Breakfast before us. Usual questions. Are you all brothers and sisters? You’re going to be late for school, aren’t you?
Paul Henry did his introduction, we gasped collectively when he decided to speak to T4, but she ACTUALLY ANSWERED HIM. Whew.
Before we knew it, the interview was over.
We hadn’t got to say the half of what we wanted to!
We’d thought we were going to be asked *what are you doing?* *why?* *how can you afford it?* and *what are you raising money for?*
The *why* never got there (which meant we didn’t get to use this line: Even before we had any children we knew we wanted to give them more than just a suburban kiwi upbringing, to allow them to see, smell, touch, taste more of the world than just their privileged corner.)
And we only just managed to squeeze in a little bit about fundraising. But not this:
We didn’t want the children just focussed on saving money for us, because it’s not about us. So we decided to try to raise funds to help some of the places we’ll be volunteering in.
One place is Big Brother Mouse in Laos….a retired American book published has set up a Lao-owned and run publishing company to try to raise the level of literacy and provide meaningful work for local people. As the average annual income is only $400 it’s hard to come up with the $4or5000 it costs to publish a book, so they appreciate outside donations. Distributing the books to remote villages is one of their major jobs once the books are published.
J12 was set to add:
I make flower presses to sell and did a special fundraising production run recently. All the profits from that are going to sponsor a mini-library for a rural village in Laos. The Big Brother Mouse people take a box of books to a village and run a book party where they teach the children how to look after books, give them an art lesson and have a storytime and then the children get to choose a book to keep. Plus they leave extra books for the whole community to share. I’m looking forward to going to the village and meeting the children at the book party we are sponsoring.
J13 would have continued:
Once J12 raised enough money for a book party we thought it would be great to raise money to help sponsor the publication of a new book as well. Last weekend we ran a silent auction and next weekend our family will be doing the 16km Coast to Coast walk – friends are sponsoring us to do that and if anyone else wanted to they could! So far we have raised $1600 and it would be great to be able to give even more.
And we didn’t get to our ironical quote either:
“Most people can do extraordinary things if they have the confidence or take the risks. Yet most people don’t. They sit in front of the telly and treat life as if it goes on forever.”Probably just as well, really.