With choppy Spanish, I spoke with two mothers I have gotten to know over the past couple weeks during the summer lunch. Both mothers are friendly and warm with six children each at the lunch. One family has six daughters, the other has three sons and three daughters. Though we can’t delve into deep conversation, I know we all enjoy our weekly chats as I stumble over conjugating my spanish verbs.
As I listened today, the conversation organically segued to the summer adult meals. The two families had all of their school-age children in summer school, but did not participate in the summer food program at the school site.
“Tuve que sentarme y mirarlos comer. Yo no quiero sentirme así.” I had to sit and only watch them eat. I don’t like that feeling.
Entonces, tuve que tirar el alimento extra en la basura. Then, I had to throw away the extra food in the trash.
Each day, they would rush the children from school, which ended at 12:00 PM and attend the Now Faith site by 12:15 PM, where they could eat the adult meal for $1.00. They stopped eating at the school last summer after being scolded for finishing an orange that one child did not want. Federal regulations do not permit the adults to eat the leftover food and $3.00 was too expensive for the mothers, so they had to watch their children eat every day. When they found the affordable meal at Now Faith, they became regular attenders.