My favorite part of the day is when the teachers leave me with the classroom and I can actually help the students. Take that away and there is no help at all. I’ve never seen a student go to a teacher for help, and I’ve never seen a teacher walk around the room looking to give help either. Most of the time they are given an assignment and they don’t even do it. Their teacher will leave the room and they’ll go back to drawing and when the teacher comes back with a stick to beat them they just pretend like they were being productive. They usually get hit regardless. I’ll go around and try to get them to at least work on what they’re supposed to be doing but generally that doesn’t do much because they have no idea what their supposed to be doing. I did spend some time with a few of them on adding fractions and finding the least common multiple. The teacher did a couple of examples of this on the board and only one student (the smartest one) called out answers. That apparently satisfied the teacher enough to give them 3 problems to do on their own. But the guys made it a lot more complicated when the problems he gave them were a lot more difficult and not so similar to the ones he did as examples. It’s like instead of starting from the basics and making sure everyone is learning something they teach at a fast pace high level so that only 1% of them have a chance of following along. That’s probably why the average grade on the tests is below 25%.
Because Mawande came with me to town yesterday I wasn’t really sure who would go with Avela. Realistic I can’t take everyone so I’ve been just taking the ones that have offered me the most help; showing me around Kayamandi and helping me with translations. I ended up having Kwanele come with us. He was recently switched to our class and joined our “group”. The trip started off more quiet than usual because Avela is shy and I didn’t know Kwanele as well. It only took me buying them something to drink for them to come out of their shells. The rest of the trip was great. We did the bookstore, café, and before going to Spur we made a stop at the post office. I was dropping of 20ish post cards and needed some stamps. The girl that put the stamps on was so dumb. They have stamps available for different amounts of money. The larger post cards require a R20 stamp. Rather than just posting one of those R20 on there she put four R5 stamps on their covering up part of the text and address. I’m really not that confident most of the cards are going to arrive. And of course the one I sent to myself she butchered the most! She even put a stamp on the picture side! Sorry Sully. I took pictures of all the cards before I sent them out so if you don’t receive your card at least I documented it As for the last cards I sent out earlier in my trip… I’m not so sure. Anna and Mike, I did send you one so I hope it arrives eventually. Maybe send me your address again so I can double check it. I still need Eric Helms address, I have a card sitting here for him with nowhere to send it haha. Christine (I don’t remember your new last name) McCann I need your address! Let’s see, I don’t have an address for Beth Joy, or either of the Wills, nor one for Brandon and Marta. I’d like Christopher Williams address please. Anyone know Tyler Christies new address? I’m sure there are more addresses I’m forgetting but if you can help me I’d appreciate it. Sam address, ncela?
Ok sorry, back to the day. I think because these two guys are quieter than the others it made dinner a lot more amusing. They were set on only using their knife and fork for eating their ribs. Luckily they were playing video games when the food arrived so I cut it for them before they got to the table. They still tried to cut it off the bone but that was with little prevail. I did eventually just convince them to use their hands. I’ve been doing a pretty good job documenting these outings and taking pictures and some videos and without ever missing a beat, as soon as I bring the camera out they pick up the knife and fork haha. I tried to tell them they’re not fooling anybody when their hands and faces are covered with barbecue sauce.
After ice cream (which Avela managed to drip all down the entire side of his body) we headed back to my place. I let them play with my computer and look through pictures and videos while I worked with Avela on the rubics cube.
We developed a system so that they know if I am home or not. We use the ring of a bottle cap on the gate as a sign if I am home. If the ring is there then I’m home and if it’s not there then I’m elsewhere. So not long after we got home there were more visitors. One important thing I noted today was that they are able to read more of my journal then I thought. I think it’s mostly just key words they are picking out and doing their best to make sense of it but I have to be more careful what I write in it.
Isaac was in town again with a new tour group and I convinced Lelethu to come out with us after dinner. We spent the evening meeting people from around the world and lucky for us they paid for all the drinks. Of course a 2 liter bottle of wine only cost R60 at the restaurant we were at which is about $8 haha, so no one was spending too much. On the way to town while I was in Isaacs van I saw a guy get jumped right on the side of the road by 3 other guys. That’s not even fair, and I think there should be rules with a mugging so that the victim at least has a chance. Either 1 v 1 anything goes, or 2 v 1 and no weapons… that’s just what I think though. I’ve been in Kayamandi for over a month now and I’ve gotten to know a lot of people. We’ll mostly they know me. Only problem is almost all of them are under the age of 13. I’m pretty careful though, Hakuna Matata