Saturday, 3 November 2007

5 weeks back already!

Hi everyone,

First of all let me apologise to all those people, now from all over the world, who have looked at the blog but have not seen any changes for about a month an certainly since we came back from England. I can see which countries those people who look at it are from and it’s great to be connected with friends from all over.

Many people ask how Dad is. Doing well by all accounts. He is back home and going about his life in the same way as he always did and even, dare I say it, a little bit better than before. They seem to have sorted out his tablets and he is enjoying life.

We’ve been back five weeks and time goes so quickly here. The month in England seemed quite long in comparison. Time is a strange thing. It can seem like a long time and a short time at the same time if you follow my meaning. But I think I am beginning to waffle. I was always good at that or so they told me when I did my O levels.

We came back to a lot of work. We knew we had been missed because everyone was waiting for us practically at the door as we went into NCERD. Can Mary do the literacy Radio programmes by January? Will you speak to three HTs’ meetings in Georgetown starting tomorrow? Will you meet 120 trainees and tell them how to do their exams better? Yes, Yes, but let us breathe first. In fact, it became a little heavy at times and I took a few days off work feeling exhausted. Mary has completed a workshop for Primary teachers on Phonics and has been to Region 6 and Region 5 to deliver ones on how to use a set of textbooks. We are booked up for most of November going to Region 10 (Linden where we were supposed to be going originally) and Region 2 across the Essequibo River and round an island on the river that is bigger than Barbados We are evaluating literacy materials. Mary will also go to Region 3 (Vreed en Hoop very close) and Region 6 (New Amsterdam) again. I will assist a Diaspora Volunteer in Region 7 (Bartica) for a couple of days doing a needs analysis of Educational Management. I already know what we will find! So it’s very hectic and we need to slow down a little but they say that Christmas in Guyana will allow us to do that because not a lot happens in the schools. We are thinking of going to St Lucia for New Year but haven’t booked anything yet.

The weather is very hot and there is little breeze and we have hardly seen any rain for months but it is due to start again soon for November and December. As I’m writing, the flock of parrots that land in our garden ten minutes after dawn and ten minutes before dusk have just flown by. They set the dogs barking and the whole world seems to go wild for half an hour.

We had another VSO staying with us from Region 6 last weekend – Cheryl. It was good to catch up. She is the last one remaining from the group who came in the October 2006. She’s here for two years and thinking of extending. Most were on 6 months – 1 year placements and have now returned. Some returned early. But Sandra from Ireland, came back to see us all last week as well. She looks well but she couldn’t stay away from Guyana. It seems you either love it or hate it. We’re in the former group.

After a hectic week at work we are having a restful weekend – we hope! Last night, Cecelia, one of the landladies cooked a full meal for all of the VSOs in Georgetown. It was incredible. I have never eaten any of the things before but every one was more delicious than the rest. It’s amazing what flavours and textures you can get without using any meat or fish at all! We’ve often had to cook veggie here (or Viggie as they call it in the Pizza Hut by mistake) and would like to think we are getting better at it. Many of the volunteers are vegetarian.

Next weekend we have booked to go The Toucan Inn. It is in Region 3. It is a guest house and museum with a small swimming pool. We hope to catch up on some rest. We went there before for the VSO Forum and it’s a great place to “chill”. Perhaps the next blog will be from there.

Today we will go shopping for some essentials – including weighing scales to make sure we don’t put all the weight back on. The rest is mundane. No church or coffee after church tomorrow as we are hoping to lie in to catch up but I suppose the dogs, the birds, the landlady, the frogs, the brush lady, the music man, the minibus, the ice cream
man, the hackers and slashers or some such Sunday pass timers will wake us up before 5am!!! Watch this space!!!