Sunday, March 14, 2010

March 7, 2010

It is the day before my niece, Ellen's birthday and exactly one week and a day since my first setloholo, Luisa, was born!

This week has felt routine...that's great; it seems as though I developing a daily pattern of sorts. Up at 5:00 A.M...not really by choice (although I don't mind the early mornings at all). I am up with the call of all the animals in the village...the cows, donkeys, sheep, silly cat, the cat next door, the calves, chickens, etc. You see, since most people in Lesotho still don't have electricity, they are used to awakening with the first light of day and going to bed at around 9 P.M....or sometime after the sun's gone to bed.

Images that fill my days:
the Lesotho hat, symbol for this country, found on the flag

the big black pots we cook the papa in...papa is the staple food; it's like a very dry, white corn meal, eaten with the fingers, along with moroho, (vegetables).

My Tabola family

I have been spending a week at each of my three schools on a rotating basis; I think that after the Easter break, I change my schedule to two days at each of two schools and Friday a floater day. It seems that after two weeks away from a school, I find it difficult to remember the teachers' names!!!

My work at all the schools seems to be going well; I've made a set of math cards for the upper grades in each school, set up a science and math laboratory in the two government schools (there's no place to set one up in the church school), observed and spoken with every teacher in each school, and, generally speaking, have become a welcome face at each place!

I'm getting quite good at getting around on public transportation (which consists of many many over-crowded, run down vans which run from village to village carrying as many people and bundles of whatever that they can squeeze into every inch of space). I find often myself holding someone's baby in my arms or holding someone's packages as we bump along the dirt roads to the next town. Luckily for me, walking is something I've always liked because my nearest school is about twenty minutes' walk and the furthest is one and a half hours. This will be interesting during the winter months.

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