OH MY GOSH! This was the best and worst day so far. Ups and downs~
I woke up early and went on a jog with Lyn, Tyler, Jordyn and Kate around Asylum Down. People were looking and waving and cheering us on. Most people will look at you but not smile...until you do and wave hello. Then a huge grin will spread across their face and they will say "hello, hi". Oh, and then we found out today that the reason we were taking such cold showers was because our hot water switch wasn't on. And here I thought it was this "typical foreign let's take cold showers" experience. No.
Grey Memorial School is the school where we will be teaching our “bag of tricks”. We went this morning just to get acquainted with the headmistress and to take a small tour of the school. As we walked in there are kids in yellow uniforms (dresses for girls and shirts for boys) all over the open court yard. I think we hit it at recess. We walked down the hall and, through the barred or brick windows, we could see the kids looking up from their desks and waving.
We looked in each of the eight classrooms that have agreed to let us teach and we got to choose "our class". Carlie and I chose classroom 4...roughly fourth grade. When we got to the end of the hall we were in front of the kindergarten class and that's when the mayhem began! We didn't really know if we could take pictures or not because we never want to be offensive, as if we are gawking at them, but holy cow...they LOVE cameras! I easily had 12-15 kids around me looking up and smiling to take a photo. I would take one and show them and there would be this pause...then AHHHH! I swear it's like they've never seen a camera before. They would try to take one and be holding it backward towards their face. Hilarious.
What I thought was most humorous and fun was how three of the kids would grab my arm and rub it and just look at it... because I am WHITE. One little girl stuck by my left side and held my hand the whole time. She was adorable and the one who was rubbing my arm the most. Took me a second to figure it out. Haha!
Pure JoyWe left the school and had class for two hours. It will be good because we will have cultural experiences for assignments. So, so far the day has been wonderful right?! Just look at the faces. Now begins the trip from you know where. We all hopped in taxi cabs to head to the Teshi Orphanage, supposedly a 20 minute drive. About 5 minutes out we're flying down the freeway and suddenly hear this Psssss and I realize we just blew a tire. We ease over to the side and the man's like "don't worry, I fix it, don't worry".
Back down the strange roads with people and goats darting through traffic to where we hoped was the Orphanage. We pass a van stuck in the mud potholes and I pray, again, we can just get there safe. Finally I see the green doors that say Teshi Orphanage across them. We pay Samuel his 5 cedi and I seriously said “I love you!” Unfortunately, as luck would have it, as I get out of the car I cut my leg on the car and show up angry, relieved, and bleeding. Lynley cleaned me up and we’re all hoping my tetanus shot really is up to date. But we got about 5 minutes with the kids, took one group photo,
then got right back into the taxi to head home. No joke, about 3 miles down the road the taxi I’m in pulls over and the driver got out. As soon as he lifted up his hood I said “That’s it! I’m cursed.” We got out and hailed the next taxi we saw, arriving home safe. Never again…until Wednesday when we go back~
The rest of the night has been pretty chill. We have our first day of teaching tomorrow AND our first day of A.I.D.S. research/teaching. Big day. We are bonding as a group and everyday I am happy I am here. Some of us had our first sick day and sadly took the medication we thought we might not need, but nothing serious. It is days like today that test your patience, and remind me that I really am in the Lord’s hand. After all we saw and having been in some of the places we were, we came out safely on the other side.