Published: November 3rd 2006November 3rd 2006
Tiki, Athi, Vive, Abonga
Singing, dancing, music, junk food, face paints and drink and the after school computer class became Athis’s 12th bday party!!! Athi's an absolute delight and he so enjoyed the party. He carried the birthday card we made for him round all the time. After singing happy birthday he stood up and did a little speech in which he thanked us for organising it and thanked everyone for coming as if we had arranged a huge event and people had travelled for miles to come.
We have found a cab driver that is willing to drive into Kayamandi after dark and have decided to make the most of it. More jenga bombs and shisha…I'd love to enrol as a student at Stellenbosch Uni. All the unis here are Afrikaans or English which is such ashame for the children at township schools like mine that learn in Xhosa. Not only are the unis expensive to attend, many of the children are not competent enough in Englkish or Afrikaans to study in the language so uni is out of the question.
Having arrived home later than anticipated, on three hours sleep and in high spirits after an awesome night out I was
Athi and Tiki
These guys are like little angels in the school. Mischievous and cheeky, thoughtful and sensitive. They come to break, lunch and after school class every day without fail. Popped round the house yesterday evening jus to say hullo too.
knocked back to reality in Kayamandi by a conversation with one of the children at school. I have worked with this young girl before and I’m very fond of her, very quiet and reserved and likes to say ‘god bless you’. She was getting frustrated with herself as she wasn’t able to spell the words and kept getting confused. Then she got a bit teary and tells me through broken English ‘I wasn’t always like this you know. I’m 18 years old and still at primary school’. She explained that she was going to high school but her mother died of AIDS and she moved here to live with her auntie and uncle. ‘He beat me’ she said. Now its OK I live only with my auntie as he is dead. Im a Christian and I forgive him, but I know that he made me not able to spell and think things. The other children say why are you here, you are 18 (kids can be cruel buggers wherever you are). I don’t know about my future...’ She says this so matter of fact then we went back to our class exercise discussing similarities between fruits. I’ve been worried about
Me and Yolanda
The face paints and stickers were a donation from El last weekend
planning my weekend travels and how can I best arrange my time so that I can see both elephants and also ride ostrichs. She’s 18 and at school with children from 5-13 year olds and has no idea where she’s headed. Ouch. I had that horrible deep feeling I can do nothing to help this person and I've a nagging uneasiness about it since she spoke to me.
On a positive note, Lukhono has a job! The search was going badly. I asked him a few days back and he said ‘Yeah its Ok , look!’ and got a bit of paper out of his pocket. Number of employer…Nope, a lottery ticket. Things obviously picked up…probably a bit of luck and coincidence, but Zoleka thinks it was the CV I did for him and you don’t argue with Mama Zoleka. He’s making juice in Stellenbosch and I don’t know how long he’ll stick at it having become used to dossing, but for the moment he’s keen. Uncle Madiba bought some home made cake bread for me, I think partly as a peace offering that he vented some of his temper on me in the week. Dam delicious, little outburst
forgotten. With my current intake of bread, toast, cereal, meat, meat, meat, toast, bread, cereal maybe I will be one of the culprits squeezing onto the mini-bus taxis in the not so distant future.
Raining for three days now and its pretty cold. Fortunately don't have any grand plans that rely on the weather this weekend but be glad for the sun to return. School timetable is even more slack than usual as its the build up to exam week and the end of term which is the end of November. Teachers are catching up on marking and not really teaching, bit difficult for us to assist with non-existent lessons. Been inventing our own exercises for the computers and Kids been reading to us (more eventful than you think on occasions...).
Time is flying by so quickly its frightening. James is in South Africa from Thursday for ten days and I'm having a few days off over the children's exam week to see some more of this beautiful country with him before I leave.
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