I’ve been meaning to write a post so that you could catch a glimpse of what a normal day here at Mariann looks like.
After waking up, I went for a morning run down the road and back. On the way, I can usually catch the Sang’alo Primary students on their way to school. One little boy started to run with me and ran all the way to his school. Of course, I get lots of surprised looks, friendly “chamgeis,” and giggles from the little ones. It’s such a great way to start the day! While I was doing Pilates in our living room, I looked out the door to see one of our resident cows staring at me. It was even shocked to see the crazy mzungu!
My first class of the day was Class 3 PE. What a rambunctious group—I just love them! The boys have this game that they play with the “plates” (i.e. Frisbees) and the “mpiret” (a squish ball). They swat it around in the air and have a great time! Of course, the girls want nothing to do with this, so I try to find something to keep them occupied. Today, it was playing with my hair and staring in wonder at the whiteness of my skin. They would say, “OH! It’s soooo white.” At one point, even some of the boys were drawn over to look at my white scalp and claw hair clip (circa 1988).
We took uji (porridge) with the teachers and chatted with them for a bit. In Class 5 Math, we practiced multiplying kilograms and grams. I worry about boring them to death, but they never stop smiling sweetly and shouting answers. J Back in Class 3 CRE (Christian Religious Education), we talked about praying to God and how Daniel faithfully prayed even though he faced the lions’ den. And God saved him! After lunch (ugali, sukuma wiki, and kitheri) with the teachers, we had Creative Arts with the students, who wove bracelets out of craft lace (which seems to be a favorite craft around here). In Class 4 CRE, we talked about “Sharing Work at School” and “Sharing Work in the Traditional African Community.” If you’re wondering, yes, I felt very inadequate and awkward teaching the latter. But it was great, and my heart smiled when they remembered their memory verse a week later: “Carry each other’s burdens and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2
After classes, we were surprised by our fellow teacher, Susan, who had made us chips (French fries). What a sweet servant heart! After a nice talk with her, we settled in for a nice reading session while the rain poured outside. We made banana pancakes for dinner and headed up to the teachers’ lounge. We played some nice rounds of “Moonshine” (our usual card game) and went to visit the younger students’ class during evening preps. Ash and I taught them “Blessed Be Your Name.” When those sweet little voices sang it back to us, I know that God and Jesus were smiling! We met with all of the students at 9 PM to close the day with singing and prayer. Of course, they sang “Our God is a Handsome God”—and how can you top that? But our day wasn’t over. We went to the girls’ dorm where we danced traditional Luhya dances (involving a lot of swaying, jumping, and other gyrations that white girls are not quite used to…especially Church of Christ white girls). We transitioned into “Little Sally Walker,” then crazy chaos. After getting them sufficiently wound up, we called it a night.
What a beautifully blessed day! God continues to give us so much, even as our days here wind down. I cannot believe that we only have 30 days left until we are back in the States, but I trust that God will bless us beyond what we can fathom. Please pray that I will stay focused, intentional, and energetic in the days to come! Love you all!