Sunday, 30 March 2008

Catching up in March 2008!

Look on the right hand side and you will see the latest news. These pictures go with our adventures of the last three weeks or so. Hope you enjoy them.

Mary works with Nursery Teachers on SEN on the Pomeroon River.

Getting to the workshop by private speedboat on the Pomeroon
Staying overnight on the River Pomeroon with the Master Trainer Yvonne Castello

Yvonne's Nursery School on the river - three staff including herself and 24 children. There was no school, so they built one a few years ago from scratch. Her nephew is one of the teachers.
Yvonne, proud of her school and her trainees are proud of her.

Headteacher Trainee workshop given by Stephen on Saturday morning in Charity Region 2 - North West of the country. Delivered in Charity Primary. Some had to come from as far as 37 miles up river to get there in the pouring rain.
Staying the night with another Master Trainer Maydha Persaud and his wife on the Essequibo coast near to Supernaam in a village called Abram Zuil

Guess who? Delivering a workshop the following Tuesday in Bartica where one of the massacres took place.

A week later we visited Kaieteur, the biggest single drop waterfall in the world. We had a private plane with Meg's family. The plane went on to Orinduic Falls. The two are totally different. They are in the mountain region of Guyana in Region 8 just this side of Brazil.

Just to prove we were there!

Orinduic is smaller and much wider. It is like a cascade of waterfalls and is very impressive.

Climb aboard my plane if you are ready to go back home.

If you want to see thes photos and many more, just click on the link below

Photographs of Kaieteur and Orinduic

Mary tries her skill at horse shoes on the beach in Region 6 over Easter. Suriname (Dutch Guiana) in the background. Shadow of me taking a photo in the foreground. That's about as much as you ever see of me.

But I think she preferred the food - Sardine Pizza!

Mary shows off her hat at the hat show - no sorry, that's not Mary. She's eating the afternoon tea with the other voilunteers. This won second prize in the over 80s competition.

And finally, there's lots of building and renovation taking place in Georgetown. We pass this house on our way to work. Wooden built with a filled in concrete section downstairs. I'll keep you posted of its progress.

Wow, the walls have been filled in already.

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Older news moved from sidebar

For those of you who read the blog regularly, you will have already read this as it is the "Older News" moved from the sidebar on the right. It couldn't stay there for technical reasons as it was getting too big. For those of you who are new to the blog, it's worth a read.

It's 2nd February and we've a lot of catching up to do - shopping etc etc etc yawn yawn!!!

It's 1st February and "Oh my God, it's February already". We've been off work from Thursday as we have some holiday to catch up on. We went to Castellani House - the National Art Gallery. We were the first visitors for 3 days and it took half an hour to buy a postcard - the security for the cards was unbelievable! But, the collection was really interesting - local art and wooden sculpture. We then went to the zoo and the Botanical Gardens. Only 10 minutes walk from our house but we've only been once before - it's generally too hot when we are free. The zoo has computerised. Unfortunately we couldn't enter when we wanted to because of a power cut!!! What's wrong with tickets on a roll?
Then we headed for the Pegasus Hotel for Afternoon Tea. This was to be a real treat. never done it before, but "Oh No!" it was closed. So off we went to Windies - Western style sports bar to have a drink and then home.
The next day we had our friends Meg and Hans around for a meal to meet the two Diaspora Volunteers from Toronto, Canada, (Bharat and Peter) who I will be going to Bartica with on Monday to Thursday to do a workshop on Teacher Motivation. We had that famous Guyanese Dish - Pasta Amatriciana with Garlic Bread - Home made of course.

It's 28th January and I'm home alone - Mary in Bartica. Probably a good time for an early night. Thanks for all the replies to the email we sent to all and sundry. It's great to know that you are all still out there. It was a really pleasant 26C this morning, the sky was blue and all was well with the world, except for Lusignan where the police were stopping a peaceful demonstration with tear gas. We know people who live 100 yards from the scene of the tragedy and it was a terrifying weekend for them.
The reading conference was interesting. At least people are starting to talk to each other. My main concern is that the lack of reading ability in the schools is not just about literacy strategies but a much deeper problem of teacher education, motivation and accountability. I said it to lots of nods of agreement and a round of applause but saying it is one thing and doing it is another. It will probably be televised so I'll watch the 6pm news in 10 minutes.

It's 27th January and I have completed my tax form (5 hours) and they owe me a lot of money so it's Trinidad and Tobago for our 35th Wedding Anniversary in April. Yippee. Mary's off to a Hindu wedding today so we may have some photos soon.
It's 26th January again and we hear on the news of the death of 11 people killed by guns in a village 10 miles east of Georgetown. There were children amongst them. How can people be so evil? We are fine but are following the usual foreign office advice of keeping a low profile. There is no need for concern.

It's 26th January and it's a Saturday, yesssss! but oh no!, I have to fill in my tax form on the internet for 2006. I've been putting it off now for 10 months even though they owe me money. Back to reality! Mary is off to Bartica Region 7 by speedboat) with Meg for 3 days on Monday doing an Educare "after school club" workshop. I'll be going to a mass literacy conference and assisting with the HOD's presentation (the technical bits, but I wrote it!). Sorry about the lack of emails from us lately but keep looking at the blog and all will be revealed slowly slowly or as the say in Guyana "Just now". If you want to know the implications of "Just now", scroll down on the right hand side for an excellent descriptiion by Yvonne, a World teach Volunteer from the US.
Keep in touch.

It's 23rd January 2008 and it's a countdown now to our year in Guyana on 13th February - just 3 weeks to go today. Did you ever have a day when you put on your socks and then your shoes and you are about to go out and you notice that they're odd socks and, to boot, one of them is inside out? Today was such a day and I did nothing about it. However, the rest of the day was not quite such an inside out and odd day - quite good really. Maybe I'll do it everyday.

It's 22nd January and yesterday (Monday) was just a bad day. Politics, arguments, frustrations and all in the office. Let's hope it's better today!

It's 19th January and we've just got back from the Forum. The Toucan Inn is always a pleasure to visit. It's so relaxing and interesting. We worked quite hard and relaxed well into the evening. In addition, the small swimming pool is certainly a treat. Thanks to Nicolette and Hannah for arranging it.

It's 16th January and tomorrow we will go to Region 3 to spend 2 and a half days at the VSO Forum in the Toucan Inn and Heritage Hotel. The last Forum was there and we went there for a weekend in November with our friends Meg, Bill and Mira.
We will meet up with all the other VSOs from the various regions in Guyana and catch up with their adventures. If nothing else, it will be an opportunity to have someone else cook for us. It's got a small pool and lots of atmosphere. We'll let you know how we got on on Saturday when we get back.

It's 13th January and we are celebrating 11 months in Guyana with a peaceful Sunday at home. We've just had the after church coffee and we are summing up strength for tomorrow. I will be giving a workshop with Nursery School Headteachers (one day's notice) and Mary will be giving demonstration lessons in a Special School. It's all in a day's work!

It's 10th January and we've decided to take a day off tomorrow. We have 7 days holiday left before the year is up. We'll take some days here and there around the commitments we have - workshops, Minister's meetings, visits to Region 7. We are in region 7 for 7 days continuously but not at the same time - Mary for 3 days and I go for 4 days on different projects. Two different organisations! What kind of planning is that?
The Ministers' conference on teacher training yesterday went very well. People were talking to each other - that was good. there will be a lot of changes.
Our Peace Corps neighbour, Pam from the US is leaving tomorrow and so we've been invited for a drink. So, must dash!!!!!

It's 8th January 2008 and my, doesn't time fly? We've been back in Guyana for five days already and back at work for three. It was a wonderful holiday in St Lucia. I'll not say too much about it here, but just have a look at the main page and you'll read all about it and you can follow the links to some photos.
By the way, everyone here is complaining how cold it is here! Brrrrr!!!!! I had to switch the fan off last night as well as covering up with a sheet, and most of the Guyanese are shivering. It hit a low of 25C today and no less than 22C overnight. Wow! It's fur coat weather!!!
By the way, work is fine. At a workshop with the Ministers tomorrow. Mary and Meg have done a workshop with a special school. It went well and was challenging but they'll make a big difference to the non-readers at age 16 (or are some of them 22?)

It's 26th December, the Feast of Saint Stephen and Christmas is already over! We had a great time yesterday with our friends Meg and Bill. It was torrential rain for almost all of the day so we had our BBQ food indoors. It was delicious - snook and sprout kebabs, fillet steak, various salads and trifle, of course.Today we will have the leftovers along with chicken kebabs, Pepper pot and Black Cake (the traditional dishes for Christmas in Guyana).Hope you all had a great time and enjoy the rest of the holiday.Off to St Lucia tomorrow at 4am. Yippee!
It's 22nd December and it's the final preparations for Christmas in Guyana. Everyone here scrubs, cleans, changes curtains and generally has a big Spring clean (they don't have Spring, you see!). We might do a little light brushing after church but nothing too much to over do it. Then wrap a few presents or, more accurately, re-wrap presents after the customs got hold of them. Probably watch another Santa film to get us in the mood tonight (beggars can't be choosers!).

It's 17th December and today, because Mary has gone to bed - physical exhaustion, I think, I've decided to write a proper blog. So see to the left.Best wishes to you all
Wow! It's 15th December and only 10 days to Christmas. We did have a really good week with the Office Party on Tuesday, Hans' Christmas party on Wednesday, The Christmas Carol Festival (3 hours) and a Chinese meal on Thursday, resting on Friday our friend Cheryl on Saturday.On Monday, Mary and I are the facilitators for the Leaving Forum for 4 volunteers who are leaving. The strange thing is that none of them is going home yet - two tavelling and two having new lives here! Anyway we'll make it a good day.It's 11th December and the rainy season really started with a vengeance today - all day and night with violent thunder storms in the evening. But it's cleared up now.Should be a good week this week coming up to Christmas. Things are getting slower in the office, the decorations have gone up and we have the office party tomorrow and drinks on Wednesday followed by carols in the Catholic cathedral on Thursday.It's 8th December and it's been a great two days. Firstly, yesterday was Friday and in the evening we were invited to the British High Commissioner's Residence for Drinks - drank wine (lots), chatted with the Prime Minister (Hon. Samuel Hinds) and was invited to cook bread on the only Guyanese cooking show by its celebrity cook - Kayleigh Burgess. She took my number, so watch this space.Today we went to a concert by people with disabilities for the UN International Day of Disabled Persons.It's 5th December and we've taken the morning off after our trip to Linden and especially the next day to Kwakwani visiting 3 schools along the way that haven't had anyone coming to them in a very long time, including a mining school and a river school. A great experience and lots to tell. - 250 Km round trip on unmade roads. Which side of the road do you drive on? - The one with the least potholes, of course! Coming up soon.3rd December 2007 Mary and I will be going to Linden for three days to evaluate the use of some Literacy materials. This is where we should have gone for our original placements. Although we have been there before we should get to see it better over a longer period.

It's 2nd December 2007 and it's pouring with rain and we've just been on a March for Disability Awareness Week. We walked from the National Commission for Disability to Ptolemy Reid Special School. Two Ministers were present. More about it to come.It's 1st December 2007 and it's the hottest December day we've experienced in our lives - about 35 degrees. Christmas is already in Guyana - snowmen, icicles, Santa and Rheindeer. Feels strange but it's true!

It's 29th November 2007 and we've just been to a meeting at VSO. At exactly 3pm, the room started to shake and things rattled. We all felt dizzy as though we were a little drunk an lo and behold we were in the middle of an earth tremor from Martinique. More to follow.

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Make Passion Fruit Juice - wikiHow

I'm getting carried away. Just made some of our favourite juice. Put it on the net for all to share. Enjoy. Let me know if you made it.

Just click on the link below.

Friday, 14 March 2008

Make Bread by the Intuitive Method - wikiHow

I have entered the Wiki world. Well, I've had a go at sharing bread making skills. Look at the internet article if you are interested.

Make Bread by the Intuitive Method - wikiHow