it is cotton harvest time and each evening the ladies return with the days pickings for weighing-it is like a sceen from Dickens with the old weighing machine and the accuontant with his book and pen.The children play 'snowballs'!
Thanks for all the messages-we still dont have inter-net at the farm but we mansge to get o Lahore every so often and have the pleasure of your comunications then.
What news-well we have an electric fire but no plug but,hey, lets just push the bare wires into the extention lead that is held together with string! [we have since taken the plug off my hair dryer and used that!]
We have HOT WATER!! Bliss but the other people on the farm have realised this and come for buckets of hot water!
The Ali isnstitute have now provided the TARC 'office' with a computer and printer which will make things a lot easier ans Kosar and Rabia think we are great because we got it for them!!!However--the many power cuts mean that it can only be used for a couple of hours each day! The 'office' is a room on the roof of the girls high school and looks rather like a tatty shed with peeling paint ,2 old desks,one cupboard and some old chairs from a lecture room. Still the view over the village and the dairy is really nice!
We have visited all our schools now and
I love the views we get on this little road-seems like the opening sceens froom a film!
they could break your heart. One girls school has 200 children in a couple of dirty dark rooms sitting on sacks that they have to bring from home.The teachers seemed quite dedicated and want to do better but it is hard to see what we can achieve without actual money to inprove the buildings.
The boys schools seem to be better with bigger buildings and grounds but still the teacher/child ratio is at least 50 to 1,when they actually come to school.
We are planning to get white-wash and have the walls painted and then draw educational pictures and charts for the children to paint-The Ali institute will pay for paint but the schools need to pay for whitewash so School Coucil meetings are being arranged to sort this.
Attended what was meant to be a school council meeting but it was highjacked by the farm manager and a nestle rep to talk about getting better yield from the locals buffalo.An hour sitting in the [sorry] hot winter sun listening to a meeting about milk?! But we were guests of honour!!
We continue to enjoy lovely walks but got sniched on and are now told that we need a guard
This happens just outside our room every day at meal times. The fire is fueled by maise husks bought bacfk from the fields in hug bundles on peoples heads.
to 'not walk with you but follow'!! Why?Well there are some jacklals and boar about that we have seen but I did try and expain that they will be more afraid of us!!We have also seen otter type things and mongoose and lots of different birds.
It will be Eid next week and we have been invited to spend the holiday at Kasur with the farm maneger and his family-there are many sweet goats and sheep around decorated with ribbons and necklaces--they dont have long left!!!! Just hope it dosnt get too gory!
Sending more pictures
Hope everyones Christmas preparations are going well .I will miss not doing the concert and being with the children at this time.
Take care and keep the messages coming
LOve Jane and Geoff
PS our addreess
Sydenwala Agricultural Farm
Kot Rahda Kishen
Just in case anyone wants to write!!!
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