Friday, February 01, 2008

Finally a new post, I know!

I am deeply ashamed of myself for not putting up a new post for MONTHS! Not even when I was in the states with 24 hour internet for 5 whole weeks! I really am a bum. But here I am, back in Nampula, and ready to write a hurried entry....

To continue on after my last realy entry, I went down to training in November, and had a great time meeting the new Moz 12ers. That was the week when they started model school, doing 45 minute lessons at the secondary school where training is held, so I got to observe the new Chemistry and Biology teachers in action. I tried to give them constructive and encouraging feedback--including which of the vocab they used was actually portuguese and not spanish :) --and had an especially fantastic time hanging out with the other pcvs from my group who were also down at training. I had access to all kinds of exciting ingredients that we don't get up north, and made lots of fun things like lasagne. We also hosted the Thanksgiving celebration, for which I made butternut squash cake and brownies (the trainees were practically swooning, and thanking me with tears in their eyes!)

From there I rushed back home to Namapa for just three days to pack up, and prepare the house for my new sitemate Kim. Then back I flew to Maputo, then to JoBurg, and finally on to was so exciting, I watched 7 movies on the plane (more than i had seen in a year) and ate the FANTASTIC airline food (how my standards have changed) which included TOMATO, CUCUMBER, CHEESE, BUTTER! Sigh....

The month at home was a wonderful recharge, full of great family and friend time, and an obscene amount of eating. Ever since i got back to Namapa I have been hearing "Voltaste mais gordinha!" (you came back fatter), which is a compliment here. There were several people I didn't get to see (including my Laura!!!!), which was sad, but I did manage to jam in a lot of people, places, activities and meals.

Three weeks ago I got back to Maputo in time for our Mid Service conference, at which I saw my entire training group, many of whom I had not seen for over a year. We did lots of catching up, along with watching tons of House (so addictive) on various peoples' laptops. Sadly our wonderful CD Dave is retiring and is off to the states this week, but our new director Christine Djondo seems very promising.

After a week in Maputo (without internet, alas!) I traveled back to Nampula (flight 15 hours late, got into the city at 2am, and there was no electricity, so i couldn't use my hostel reservation (how would i find the room?) and had to talk my way into the nice hotel (with generator).

At long last I arrived in Namapa and had the chance to get to know Kim, my nice new site mate. She's from Chicago (our students here informed us that's where 50 Cent comes from...oh the things you learn in Africa!), and wants to be an ESL teacher, so she's a good fit for teaching English in Namapa! We've been cooking creatively with our sparce ingredients, and getting to know each other bit by bit. My brother would approve of her music taste including Stone Temple Pilots and Portishead :) I'll write more indepth about her in the coming months.

We worked busily at school through the last few weeks, putting togther turmas (the groups in which kids have all their classes), arranging the schedule (a nightmare i don't even want to think back on), and finally starting classes. This year I have 8th(again) and 10th (genetics, evolution and ecology), which will be fun. I am not looking forward to grading though, because I have about 200 more kids than last year. Last year i only had 7 turmas, and they were all 8th grade (about 80 kids each). This year I have 8 turmas, 5 of which are 8th, and the other three of which are 10th, which have 120 kids per class. Oy. They're going to be seriously packed in like sardines, with a lot on the floor!

I just received a ton of books from Mary, and am just starting to receive the batch mummy put together with the fantastic help of GPC, so thank you thank you thank you everyone who contributed. We will be plowing ahead on our library project, and everyone here is really excited.

So much more to write, but no time, alas. Take care, lots of love to all. Keep the letters and texts coming!

ps. no time for proof reading, so forgive me if this is incoherent.....


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