I need to start resisting the urge to catch the baby geckos. But they're so darn cute crawling up my wall.
17.08.2009 - 24.08.2009
I wrapped up my week of training this past Friday. It was intense, it was quick, and made me a teacher in five days!
I can now write weekly AND yearly plans and with the help of how-to youtube videos, control the behavioral climate of a classroom.
The one thing training did not do however, was make me a good speller. Which I am teaching. Which I find mildly hilarious.
School went great. Its really like the stage. Much like my waitressing job. Except with a little more attitude. Think Fanny from "Sense and Sensibility" meets Sister Prejean from "Dead Man Walking." As a reminder--I'm teaching 4-6th grade--spelling and reading. So far so good. Only a couple problem kids. Easily dealt with once I pull out the Fanny face. But this year will definitely take a lot of energy. And I have a heck of a lot more respect for my past teachers. If you see an old teacher, love them, massage their feet, kiss their hands and say "Why for the love of the Lord, do you do what you do for the amount you get paid?"
or for free for that matter....This is a picture of us after our first day of teaching (some of us were more dramatic than others)
But lets make this quick. Here are the highlights:
The Honduran teachers are....how shall I say?.....super fly! I had a conversation with one of my cousins, Chelsea, before I left and I was sharing my concerns about how I'd fit into this culture. Would I fit in better in a European culture as opposed to an Asian..etc. ect. (I still don't really know what I'm talking about as all I have to go on are generalizations)
She said that Latino/Hispanic culture would fit me like a glove. And boy, do I feel like I've known these people for years. When I am able to get a picture up of these crazies, I'll go into more detail so you can put names to faces. But many have offered to take us to the beach, go shopping, go dancing, fix us up with their brothers... Just kidding Dad. Well....sort of.
Most of them speak fluent English, only a handful struggle. But we find our ways to communicate. My super secret plot right now is to get all of the staff to be in an ESL shortened version of Midsummer Night's Dream to be performed at the end of the year...we'll see.
Brenda, Hannah, and I were feeling a little overwhelmed on Thursday---our internet wasn't hooked up, our washer was broken, we didn't know what a lesson plan was, we didn't know how to get around for groceries etc....and we were feeling generally unloved by the administration. Then. Diana swept in, paid for our internet herself, arranged for our washer to be fixed, had us over to her house (complete with swimming pool) to work on our lesson plans, bought us dinner and gave us cerveza and champagne! As we were about to drive home in her truck, I asked her if I could ride in the back, as I had seen other Hondurans do down the center of San Pedro Sula. It was amazing. The city at night, flying by, taking in the locals who try to sell you strange fruit at stop lights.
Went shopping! I only brought one piece of luggage for 10 months. Very, very silly. Should've paid the $15 for the second piece. Needless to say-Shopping ensued! San Pedro, unfortunately or fortunately I don't know yet, has not escaped the clutches of our freaking pervasive American clutches. So it was fast, fun, and profitable!
One of the teachers I work with is an actress at one of the biggest theatres in San Pedro. She invited Hannah and I too a "dress rehearsal"......the theatre was beautiful. Huge elaborate set, gigantic cast of attractive actors. But this was not a "dress rehearsal". This was a let's-make-the-costume-designer-have-a-heart-attack event. Ok. I'm by no means a costume designer and to not boast to be connoisseur but these costumes were immaculate. Tailored, cut, creative, beautiful...and the director spent 2 and 1/2 hours critiquing and photographing every costume. (One of my favorite moments was when he told the lead female, who is in incredible shape, that she looked like she was pregnant in one of her costumes) So I have come to understand that presentation and detail are very important to the Hondurans. The show opens in a week or so and I'm going with the girls....we'll see how the acting is.... Below is a picture of Patty, the teacher by day, actress by night who shut her eyes, but I couldn't get her to sit still longer than that (a woman after my own heart). A group of the actors, AND a picture of the actress in the dress where he said she looked pregnant. Insanity.
I went to church with Jeanine, a fellow teacher, this past Sunday. It was a great experience. Massive church. And I stuck out like a sore thumb....pretty sure I was the only gringa in the sea of a thousand or more people. Jeanine translated for me, but I don't think its difficult to spot a great pastor when you hear one. One of my favorite things was the four different dancing troupes of about 40-50 people each that danced through the entire worship service (about an hour long). They were dripping with sweat. The only disconcerting thing to me about this church was the women had to wear scarves over their heads during any given prayer during the service. Jeanine told me this was to symbolize their dominion over the angels...and when I asked if the men had to wear them, she said, "The men are the head of the Church. Their dominion is assumed. We wear the scarves also as submission to the men. We submit to the authority of the men."
This something I can respect. And I didn't allow it to detract from my experience on Sunday. BUT I will be trying the church behind my house this coming Sunday.
And for my intercessors out there, which I cannot put into words how grateful I am to you, here are some of my prayer concerns:
I am here for a reason. I've been on this path for years now. I am finding it frustrating searching out God's will for me here. I don't really know how to precede and I've always lacked in the patience department.
Safety. Safety. Safety.
Health. Health. Health.
And me and the other teachers are picking up a lot of the trash from last year. It was not a good year for the school. So please pray for healing and how God can use me in that. Be a tool for renewal and not destruction.
And always for energy and love. In bulk, Costco-Sam's Club like amounts.
And for a good Church. Where I can find rest and jubilation every week.
Also here are the links to Hannah and Brenda's blogs if you want more detailed or different accounts of my journey!