just slurped down another smoked chicken: after creating a gap between the skin and the meat with a sharp knife, i slid in about 50 capers and some rosemary. then made up a sauce consisting of olive oil, sugar, salt, and rosemary. basted just once. pulled the chicken off after 4 hours with the internal temperature at 180. used the capers to dress the white meat...
next up: honey basted with peppercorns.
after that: some kind of super hot pepper sauce.
i never thought i'd say it, but - I LOVE CHICKEN!!!!
all day diocesan meeting.
today we took the motocycles where no motorcycle had ever gone before. for those of you who are familiar with the area, that means pomito. sure, almost all the way to the house halfway between where the truck stops and pomito itself. it was treacherous, but we made it safely. saved about 10 minutes too. however, the inclines have been eroded from rain and mules, leaving sharp rocks and tight turns embedded within walls sometimes as high as 3-4 feet. the other tricky thing about it was the way that the path sometimes was 6" wide with a drop on one side. i did bang my shin on one of the razor sharp pieces of rock and now sport a 2" gash. no stitches needed though...nonetheless, it was worth it. next time we'll know how far we can reasonably go before hitting the really tough stretch...
the local school system stinks. the kids attend, on average, about 3.5 half-days a week and graduate with a seriously suspect knowledge of basics, even spelling. so, we have decided to open a school. that's correct, the only Catholic school within 45 miles (but about 1.5 hours by truck). however, we need to raise some funds in order to get things started. for the low price of $50,000 american dollars we can build a school, furnish it, and establish a healthy scholarship program to teach the faith to the youngsters here in banica, pedro santana, and sabana cruz.
we will charge the kids about 200 pesos a month to attend (the price of a 1.5 chickens or 5 beers), but that will stretch some family's budgets, therefore the scholarship program - this way the school will be self-sufficient, at least in economic theory...the plan is to begin with grades 1-4 and add a grade every year. we have everything in place: books, director, teachers, chalkboards, and we just need the rest of the money.
due to God's good grace, we have already raised $33,000, but seem to be stuck on that number. therefore, i make this plea to the blog readers: we need $17,000 and we need it pretty quickly if we want to begin in september. i personally guarantee that 100% of all donations will go to the construction of the school. as usual, everything is tax-deductible. so start banging on doors and hitting the phones...
any and all checks should be made payable to the diocese of arlington and sent to:
fr daniel maher
200 north glebe road
arlington, va 22203
make sure and add a cover letter stating that the money is for the school in banica.
that's it for now. we trust God will provide from here on out...
banica, dom rep - 80.3 degrees
quantico, va, usa - 83 degrees
i can't believe it. i wore a jacket all morning.
well, i officially declare it to be hot. i have stowed mrs. aker's ponchos for the summer. pray for rain - the last thing we need here is a drought.
other than that, things continue to sail along nicely: we are finishing up the three chapels that were begun by the college students and anxiously waiting for the elections in may, which will throw the country into economic turmoil...
12:15 am: going back to bed.
happy feast day to all priests.
i bought two turkeys too - might take a pic tomorrow, cause i plan on smoking one on sunday and the other we'll let live a little while longer, fatten him up, and then eat him too...
"so, are you getting married in the church?" i ask.
"no," she replies with a laugh, "it's a contract marriage."
"really, what's the deal?" i say, laughing in return.
"well, for 10,000 american dollars we marry and i never so much as kiss him. he's a big fat guy."
"really, who's paying whom?" i inquire.
"i'm paying him so i can get a visa and usa residency."
at this point everyone in the office is just looking at us. this 33 year old dominican lady has somehow come up with $10,000 american and is going to marry this fellow.
"you're paying him?!?" i ask with a grin.
"ten thousand dollars?" i add as my grin grows.
"heck, i'm american, i'll marry you for 8,000 right now..."
poor thing, we never did find a baptismal record...