Thursday, July 20, 2006

Musings From the Past Couple Weeks

It's been a while and I've meant to update but just haven't had the time. Oh well, life goes on, eh?

Let's see ... it's been a rather busy couple of weeks. We're getting ready to shut down to do term two finals. Thank goodness all my question papers are done and turned in to copy!

Last Thursday my principal asked me to come up with a blueprint/floor plan for a new school library so she can send a proposal. Currently we share a library with the primary school, which leads to some complications, so we want one just for the secondary school. I asked, “When do you need it?” “Tomorrow - Friday.” I just smiled and went to work – seriously. It doesn't even phase me any more. Finished it by Friday morning after some measuring and researching. Nothing like a 24-hour turnaround! You get used to last minute changes and requests. You just monitor and adjust...

It is not a good time to be an electrical device here. In the past two weeks the school copier broke and needs to be replaced (cheapest quote our principal could find is N$11,000), the office computer is about to go to the electronic graveyard in the sky (akin to the “Bring out your dead” scene in MP and the Holy Grail), my iPod died AND my cell phone battery is now only strong enough to survive a 30 minute phone convo or to send seven text messages.

AND a primary learner now has the protection of Saint Christopher. Sorry SEan. I had him safety pinned to my backpack and it was “privatized” yesterday afternoon when I was mobbed by some learners. I was speaking to Brother Tapps and I made the mistake of speaking in Nama to three children, who then called over every child in the area to hear me talk. They freak out with excitement if you say anything in Khoekhoegowab. Then, with a couple tugs on my backpack, it was gone!

Fortunately last weekend I was intelligent enough to under dress for the evening train ride back from Keetmanshoop, forgetting how cold the cars get. Have had a little tingle in my chest ever since.

Oh, how can I forget this story: On Monday, I had four learners absent from various classes – good students too. One of them left his bag in my classroom, so I put it by my desk (so it wouldn't get stolen). He came back in the afternoon to collect it. “Where were you?” “Sir, I was sent.” (In Namibia that means the learner had to run an errand for a teacher, usually involving purchasing personal items for them from the store) So I ask, “What was he having you get?” The reply, “Smokes.” Imagine doing that in the US?! Whoooooooo! Ah-ta-ta-ta!

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