Time Flies!

Trip Start Aug 01, 2006
Trip End Jul 14, 2007

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Flag of Guyana  ,
Sunday, November 19, 2006

Well it has certainly been a long time since I have written -- I have been really busy with school and other festivities going on here, and I am happy to say that everything is still going great. So, I'm going to try to write about the main/most interesting things that have happened in the last month:

*October 21st was Diwali, a Hindu holiday representing the Festival of Lights. Tiffany and I were invited over to a friend's house (Mandy) to celebrate. The people in the neighborhood that celebrate Diwali light small candles and put up lights all around their house. They do this about the time that the sun starts to set (6 pm). After the sun set we walked around the neighborhood looking at all the candles and lights and talking with people, which was really fun. Food is also everywhere -- and people are very eager to share their food with you. Another fun part of Diwali in Guyana is the spinning of the steel wool -- where there is a piece of seel wool at the end of a metal wire and you light in on fire, then spin it around your head, letting off lots and lots of sparks, until the wool is gone. This festivity is mostly done by the young boys of the community, as it is very possible that one can get burned while spinning. So of course I had to do it, and it was awesome. And I didn't even get burned.

*On November 5th I went to this a big Reggae/Soca party at the National Park, which was a blast. Pretty much everyone in Guyana is an amazing dancer. I'm pretty sure they start dancing in the womb. You'll see little 5 year old boys dancing better that a 25 year old American guy. Anyway, the music was awesome and we got to see a lot of great dancing. I'm trying to learn how to dance Guyanese-style. Some of my local friends are giving me some lessons.

*In regards to school, my last day of teaching for this term was actually this last friday. I didn't know that would be my last day until this past monday. I thought that I had two more weeks for teaching and review, but on monday they sent around a sheet that said, "Hi teachers! Next week we'll be starting exams, so have your final term exams turned into the HM by Wednesday. Have a good day!" So I read that, was totally shocked, and immediately started reviewing with my class. They really like to keep us on our toes here I guess. The week turned out to be alright and I actually got in a lot of review with my students. It was very encouraging because they remembered a lot! These next two weeks are allotted for exams, and then the last week of school is for graduation and the school party. I'm pretty sure that those things could all fit into one week, however they want to take 3 weeks to do them. Hmm. I don't know.

*Below I want to just state some interesting things about Guyana that have happened and don't fit in any particular category:

- One normal school day, I'm standing at the door greeting my class as they walk into the lab. One of my 9th girls exclaims, "Miss! Looking sexy today!!" And how does one respond? After the initial shock of the statement, do I say "thanks!" or "that is completely inapproppriate!" I wasn't really sure what to do at all, and I actually just laughed out loud -- is that bad? They didn't teach us what to do for that situation in Orientation.

- On another pretty normal school day, I was teaching a lesson, when a herd of goats ran into the lab. No joke. Of course all the students screamed like it was Godzilla coming to get them. I think the goats were just as scared, and immediately turned around and ran out. It was bizarre.

- On Teacher Appreciation Day the kids hosted a biscuit-eating contest between Tiffany and I in front of the whole school. I've never heard the students cheering so loud. It was deafening. And awesome. I won.

- The other day somewone threw a snake at me while I was teaching. Luckily it was fake. But seriously, who throws a snake?
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