Tuesday, June 26, 2007

hillary's uganda journal - june 25

Today might have been one of the most tiring days since I've been here! I woke up after just a few hours of sleep to make the mandazi. Then I got everything together and took a boda boda over to the school.

Our friend, Justin took this while he was here in Uganda. It's the view from the back of a boda boda.

I was there by 10:30ish. I went in the "middle class" (right above "baby class"-it goes baby, middele, top then p.1, which is like first grade) I helped them with a numbers worksheet. I was helping a couple of children with theirs, when one of the teachers came up to me and said to one of the kids: "You sit over here!" (the desk in front of me) Then she said to me, "He'll just distract you." Ummm. Well, he was the one that really needed help, but apparently not right then...the ones that need the most need to wait, I guess...? (haha)

It was kind of an interesting situation when I walked in to the class, the two teachers helped the last few kids finish their papers, which took a long time because there are always those kids that need a lot of extra help. Meanwhile, the rest of the class were all in the back of the classroom laying on a huge mat. It was just really funny to see. But that classroom was really fun. They are so ADORABLE! And when it's in a classroom it's even better because at that age is when they mostly find joy in attacking me, so that can't happen in a classroom. It makes things so much easier. Then they sang me some songs before it was time for them to go home. For one of the songs, they would pick one child out and they would do a solo (it wasn't really singing, it was kind of a chant). It went like this:

"My name is Esther I love Jesus.
Jesus. Jesus my Savior. I love Jesus.
Oh yes i do do do."

And they had a little dance with it. It was ridiculously cute!

Then I finished getting my lesson ready for the afternoon. I'm not sure if I've talked about this on here, but the teachers decided that I was going to teach an english class today. I was pretty stressed about it, but once it got here it was fine. It was pretty fun! Except for the fact that games are an unheard of thing in the Ugandan classroom, so the learning games that I did with them were a little out of control. (I'm now semi-understanding what the crazy hitting teacher was thinking!) But they all had a lot of fun, and hopefully learned something.

We were learning about polite language. I thought that there would only be so much that could be taught about this, but Ugandan people aren't a very polite people. There's nothing wrong with it, it's just the culture, to be harsh and demanding. So it was probably a good thing they told me to talk about this topic, because I don't think a Ugandan teacher could really get the point across. So they told me the class was from 2:00-2:40. That's fine, I can handle anything for 40 minutes. Even 45 seven to nine year olds that are all at different levels in their knowledge of the english language. But, of course, it wasn't 40 minutes. It was Africa time. I was in that classroom from 2:00-4:10!!! It was CRAZY!!! But I never had a time where I was awkwardly standing there, not knowing what to say. (Might be one of my worst fears) So it was ok, we spent the last 20 minutes playing a number game, which really has nothing to do with english. But, learning how to speak politely, thrilling as it is, can only be dragged on for a limited amount of time.

Then, I started to walk up to the secondary school. I love walking around Lusaka, especially when the primary school kids are out. I hear various forms of my name being called out where ever I go (Hirary, Hillaly, Hirry, Harry, Helen, herra, just to name a few... the list is endless.) It's probably the most difficult name they have ever had to say. Considering I am, to my knowledge, the ONLY GIRL named Hillary in Uganda! Yeah, highlight girl part. If there are any Hillary's, it's a guy. A fact which I have been told on many occasions after I repeat my name 6 times. Then they realize no, they aren't mishearing me, I said it, I have a man's name. But I still love it when they all call me, just to say "hi," whenever they see me. I just wish I could remember all of their names! It'll come.

Then I went to the secondary school to play basketball. Because this isn't just a 3-4 times a week thing, they want me to come everyday! Which is just fine with me! So after I walked up the path with hundreds of eyes on me the whole way. ("please don't trip please don't trip"), and then finding someone that would actually talk to me rather than just staring at me dumbfounded, I eventually found out the guys were at the football fields. So I walked back through the tunnel of eyes and started walking to the fields, But I met them on their way back to the school. So I played basketball with a few of them untill it was too dark to see the ball. We played 3 on 3 for like 2 1/2 hours. It was pretty tiring. And, they aren't too shabby, they're mostly like any street ball players. They just need some coaching, that's all. On my team I had one of the tallest guys I've seen at the school and the shortest guy. And let me tell you, we were KILLIN'! It was really fun because I feel like I'm getting back in the rhythm so all the crowd (everyone, of course, was watching the game) would go crazy whenever I did anything. It's really encouraging! I should come here more often to play basketball! (haha)

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

Whoa Hillary's a boys name! haha that's pretty sweet lol I think imma start sayin ur name in different forms everday now. I kinda like harry or maybe hirry.

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the latest on the sells

As of May 27, 2009...

Wow, it's been almost a year since we've updated this. Our family had a wonderful experience traveling to Uganda two summers ago, which prompted us to keep a journal on this blog. You can read our daily journal from our month long trip

This year brings new adventures. Our eldest daughter, Courtney, after graduating from George Fox University with honors, left for her third trip to India to spend nearly a YEAR to work at Happy Home for the Handicapped in Shimoga, India. You can read about her first trip to India and the impact it had on her life here. She'll also give us new updates from her current trip on this site (here). As of this writing, she is just starting to settle in and is very excited to be there. She has been looking forward to this for a long time!

Meanwhile, Hillary spent all of last year
touring the western U.S. with Matsiko, the choir of children we grew to love as our own in Uganda. She journalled about her experiences in Uganda if you'd like to see what that was like. At some point during this tour, she felt led to join the U.S. Army. Quite a big decision, and one she didn't take lightly. After moving through Basic Training with flying colors, she is now at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio training to become a combat medic. It's a very intense training, but we're sure she'll do well. Our whole family was able to travel to South Carolina to watch her graduate from Basic Training. What an awe inspiring experience!

Leslie is having a great year of teaching 5th graders. She's also in a Master's program, which takes a good chunk of her time. She's still finds time to read a TON of books. Literally, a ton!

Curt was overwhelmed by his experience as a first time overseas traveler and kept up his journal here (you can also read his random posts on everyday life here). The busyness of life and keeping track of his traveling kids has slowed down his writing, but he hopes to begin writing on a regular basis again soon.