Monday, April 23, 2012

Thursday: DeLaura Vs Mr. Kitty

The Landscape in Uganda is gorgeous. The People are Friendly. The food is delicious. The animals are another matter. I am beginning to believe animals of Uganda hate me. First it was the Narcissistic rooster then it was the constipated cow that plotted to sleep deprive me into a mental institution. But lucky for me I sleep harder the more sleep deprived I am. Ha ha! But I have been tested once again. This time with one of Americas most loved animal the devils spawn AKA a tabby Cat! The day started off as the ones before it, rooster, cow, malevolent thoughts, breakfast, coffee, and then happiness. We went to the school excited as always. Although there was a touch of gloom because we knew that there was only one more day left. Today’s lesson was personalizing learning. We taught techniques such as survey graph and design your own coat of arms. The time and detail the teachers put into their coat of arms made me almost shed a tear. I was touched by their account of what they found important enough to put on their coat of arms. At the end of the day we were invited to go to the founder, John Wanda, parent’s home. Never have I met better people. They were soooo nice! They cooked us a huge meal of delicious treats. 
 They spoke to us about the village and their family. I knew once I met them I would never forget them.I also will never forget their cat. A cat that seemed so innocent meowing at me with huge eyes and a seemingly sweet disposition was actually, in my opinion, laughing at me. I am allergic to cats. I sneeze and get watery eyed whenever near them. So what did this cat want to do, cozy on next to me -_- . When I tried to subtly shoo it away it gave me an evil look that warned me to not try that again. But I am not going to fear a small feline that I could pick up with one hand. The cat finally left. Thinking I finally had won I settled into getting down with my scrumptious meal. But when I paused for breath I looked up to the most horrified situations of my life. Mr. Tabby scaled the walls to a high perch above my comfortable position on the couch. The cat gave me a wicked kitty grin and proceeded to dive bomb my position. Touché mister kitty, Touché. 

Wednesday's come to soon

Wednesday’s in the US are usually the worse days of the week. To me it’s worse than Mondays because unlike Monday, on Wednesday you can see a glimpse of  light at the end of the weekday tunnel, but only a glimpse. It’s a rude tease that’s cruel and torture on my soul. But it is crazy, in Uganda it was completely opposite. I was sad to reach Wednesday so quick even with the narcissistic rooster and the constipated cow. Forgot to add on Tuesday a cow, who did not want to be out done by the obnoxious rooster, decided to add his two cents in and join in the roosters jolly games of rude behavior. The cow would mooo relentlessly from sun up to sun down. I believe it was a plot to turn me mental.

Today’s seminar was on making the notebook interactive. We introduced techniques such as the KWL chart, weaver, Flip book, rooster game (aka Hangman) which they really seemed to take a liking too. Two more days to go :-( 

Tuesday: DeLaura vs The Narcissistic Rooster

I was woken up at 2 am, 4am, and 5 am by a narcissistic rooster who I believe was beginning to taunt me. The nervousness of the seminars has left after yesterday’s success. But my calm demeanor was slowly beginning to dissipate as that blasted rooster cooka doodle dooed the morning away. I shook off my pre-coffee blues and began the morning as I did the day before. A yummy breakfast of peanut butter honey and banana over bread with a large cup of Uganda’s infamous coffee and finally the day began to look bright. Today’s seminar was on increasing student engagement. A topic that is universally important. I introduced the BINGO song. It was amazing to see the excitement in the teacher’s eyes as they recited this song. Seeing the glow in their eyes made my malevolent plans the narcissistic rooster disappear. I don’t want to leave Uganda.

Mondays Can be the Best Days!!

I woke up this morning feeling apprehension and nervousness. It’s the first day of the seminar. What if they do not like me? What if they don’t understand my fast almost indistinguishable dialect? What if I trip and fall on stage? What if…what if…what if!! The scenarios that played in my head got worse and worse as I continued to broad on the upcoming day’s events. I got up sponged off the night’s sleep and tried to (unsuccessfully) put my worries to the back of my head. Breakfast consisted of honey, peanut butter, and banana smeared over fresh Ugandan bread. I also two cups of freshly brewed Uganda coffee. This coffee was the BEST coffee I had ever had in my life. I felt the caffeine seep into my system. The jitters hit me before my system could register the beautiful glory that was in my cup.  Suddenly the day did not seem so daunting. And it was over all a GREAT day! Our lesson for the seminar was the big reveal which is adding surprise to your lesson. The teachers responded well. Although at times I spoke entirely to fast it was a success. One day down 4 more to go.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Saturday and Sunday

Saturday: We tried our best to adjust to the time change, but it was very hard. Good thing Yaya, their adorable puppy, was around a lot. Delaura was absolutely in love with her! We spent most of the day walking around the village and observe the culture. We took the opportunity to prepare at the school AAH, and set up for our week of school.

Sunday: Mount Nusu!
Kate told the group that it would take about an hour to climb up Nusu. False. It took 2 hours to climb up. On the way we discovered new fruits to try and over looked the villages and huts. It's amazing how people there climb all the way the mountain and down to get water and food. We met a bunch of children on the way down. One gave me a small stick to walk with, which I thought was adorable.

It took a total of 4-5 hours of this trip. My skin definitely paid for it later in the week.

Friday- Day 3

We stayed up all night until 6:00 am- Ugandan time.
7 am: Melideo wakes us up and finds us passed out- curled up in a ball.

30 minutes later I quickly wake up and get ready. At this time I am starting to feel queezy. I frantically packed up my things and went to breakfast. For breakfast we had coffee and tea with omlets- the yolk in their eggs are white!

After breakfast Emma takes us to convert our money. I planned on taking a lot out for shopping. And boy I did! We spent the 4-6 hours in a huge van traveling to the village. It's amazing seeing the different villages on the way there. There was a lot of butchering.

6 hours later I wake up to bumpyness and look out of my window- we finally reached the village. The Ugandans looked at us as if we were Mazugus... White people.

Welcome to Uganda!

We gather up our group, including Lacey who we met on the plane. She is really nice and very sweet. As soon as we go inside the airport, I had to pay the expect $50 to enter the country. I received my first stamp in my passport and my first finger print in a new country!

Lacey leads us to our driver, named Emma who is a graduate from Arlington Academy of Hope.
By this time it is midnight in Uganda and it took us about 45 minutes to arrive to the Fairway Hotel. Driving here was absolutely crazy! It amazes me how the people there just walk in the streets while cars and bota-botas are driving.

We finally arrive to Fairway Hotel in Kampala- very beautiful with statues and carvings of animals and village women.

Our rooms;
Melideo has a single room while the rest of the girls shared one room. We ended up building a huge fortress with our mosquito netting.

I skyped yanni and Britney, his girlfriend. After that we played hours of Go Fish. Delaura made a funny comment about the game saying "Why go fish? What am I fishing?"