Fankyou Fabulous Flo!

23rd November

I have had a productive day. They are rarely like this, but when they are like this it feels great. The productivity of today was partly caused by the spring I had in my step this morning which was caused by the most wonderful Florence Suet. Late last night, around 9 p.m. when we were eating dinner in my compound, a Peace Corps 4×4 roared into the village unexpectedly. The blazing headlights through the baobab trees made its entrance a divine spectacle. The vehicle, driven by Indiana Jones wannabe Peter, had come to drop off letters that I needed to give to two teachers at my school about a literacy workshop which we would be attending in a months time, but they also came bearing a couple of packages. One I was expecting from my Pops, which contained some really useful things such as a chalk line, herb seeds, and a bike seat that won’t tear me a new….

But the other package was completely unexpected from my beautiful, wonderful, dear friend Flo. I had Marmite for breakfast this morning, my enjoyment slightly tempered by the stale bread it was spread upon, and I have a hot chocolate to look forward to this evening. WOOP!

Back to my productive day, which I am in high enough spirits to gloat about, even though the spring in my step right now is more of a wobbly hop due to an infection on my calf. Nevertheless I have ticked off a lot of my weekly to do list.

I’ve labelled the cups and buckets that each class at the school have for for drinking and bathroom necessities. Hopefully they will stay put in each class. I’m unrealistically optimistic.

I also painted the National Anthem on a wall that faces the children during assembly. The children sing the anthem every assembly although 90% of them don’t know any of the words, so it comes out as a incomprehensible musical mumble.

I also collated the names of 100 children in the surrounding area who are not coming to school, so that we can target them for a Unicef sponsored enrollment event in a couple of months.

AND I had a good conversation with our new regional education director about getting some more furniture at our school. Not necessarily new, but furniture which doesn’t fall apart when you sit on it or have rusty nails sticking out of them (a couple of children’s feet have already been skewered this term). I’ve used my limited carpentry skills to fix up a few benches and tables and I am trying to get the teachers engaged in fixing up the broken furniture. We have lots of wood, I’ve bought nails, a hammer, a saw, sandpaper, and a screwdriver for the school, but I get the feeling that the male teachers think they are above that sort of manual labour. They are teachers so they are clever, they use their minds, not their other muscles.

AND I also made big numbers out of rocks for each grade to line up behind at assembly with the help of a couple of Grade 4 boys.

AND I spoke to the son of our school management committee chairman about coming to help me paint our library with the quick lime which I was finally able to buy a couple of days ago.

All in all a good day, and it’s even closer until it’s cooler enough to enjoy my hot chocolate.

THANK YOU FLO! On a side note, inadvertently one of the best things about her package was the newspaper it was wrapped in. I put it back to together and read it cover to cover. Twice.

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