Since my last post, i've completed meu aniversario (bday) and it was so wonderful! I got to hangout with my friends from PC in Maputo and also had two parties here in Moamba. Everyone was so nice to me-the bros threw me a surprise celebration during class and sang me songs (they learned the songs in English-of course it made me cry haha), accompanied by the guitar. Everyone gave me these awesome handmade (super elaborate) cards and little gifts that were really nice. I finally got to experience first hand the dramatic birthday cutting of the cake. It is hilarious. Everyone sings to you and takes pictures of you while you cut the cake (as if you were cutting a wedding cake-two hands on the handle) and you are supposed to look serious while doing it...
We are wrapping up our first semester and only have a week left of classes. I have been giving out my exams and grading papers and just assigned my extra credit assignment. I have started doing this so that the kids can try and improve their grades on their own (instead of relying on the 3 tries system of my school). Grading my Formacao Humana class has been interesting-i'm pretty positive this one kid thought that I just wouldn't be able to read his Portuguese, so all of his answers were completely bogus. He promptly received a zero. haha. Since we are done with actually learning material, I decided to use our last classes to watch a movie in English. I chose Remember the Titans because I hadn't seen it in a while and thought it might be cool to show the kids what football is (prior to watching the film they would always talk about what a sissy sport football is) and also to promote discussions about racism, which the film highlights. I realized after watching the film with my first class that it really wasn't the best choice for helping the kids to learn proper English-the film is filled with serious southern accents and slang. hahaha. But I was pumped because I acted as translator for my class and it was actually really easy for me-a marked difference from my translation of Mulan a few months earlier.
Padre Pierre is back from the Congo (after 2 months away!) and it's really great to have him back. He has the kids at school behaving :) Also, he brought me back two capulanas which are really pretty (i'm going to use one to make into a dress and use the other one as a towel). Capulanas are seriously my new fav. material. They make amazing clothes, towels, sheets, baby carriers, etc. So great!
Once this week is over I will have my first experience with the schools grading system, which I have heard can be rather intense....so we will see what happens. After that I have over a month off. Not sure what I'm going to do with all my free time. But....the final countdown has begun...my family will be here in 18 days!!! South Africa here I come!! I have just learned from talking to other people here that apparently S.Africa is freezing. I had no idea. Looks like i'll be investing in a heavier jacket after all. I hope everyone is having a wonderful start to summer! Send some warm thoughts my way because (I never thought i'd say this) Africa is cold...ish