Don’t brush it off

We are almost to the end of our adventures here, but the motivation everyone continues to have is incredible! I thought by now everyone would be dead, but not a chance lance. They are all pushing through hard with the most determination I’ve ever seen in a group.

Today was on the scale of awesome when it came to getting work completed. We began the day as any other. We shared breakfast together early this morning and then jumped on Sean’s truck out to the school. First things first was to make the plaster mix again. It’s becoming a morning routine now. It’s perfect though because the plaster amount usually lasts us the full day, so we only ever need to make one batch. We did sooo much plastering today. We helped André out with whatever he needed. He is a great plastering professor! We plastered the entire back wall, finished the windows and also completed the top of the entrance and the small retaining wall outside. It was a lot of measuring and fitting the boards properly to get those nice 90-degree angles, but it was well worth it. It looks so good now!

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Anthea got a chance to make her own lesson plan today, and she decided to teach on hygiene and how to keep clean. As you all know, these kids don’t really have the proper tools at their disposal to be clean. Therefore, it’s our job to teach them the importance of cleanliness and how it prevents against sickness and disease. Anthea took them on a little field trip up to the toilets today to give them a demonstration on how to use the toilets appropriately. She also recruited me to help her out. In the toilets, we talked about how the toilets worked and how to make sure to flush every time. We also told them how important it was not to put anything other than toilet paper down the drain to prevent it from clogging and breaking. It was also essential that we explain that the toilets are only for one person at a time as well as reiterating how to wash their hands when they’re done. Anthea had a talk with them about the soap and how to use it and what it does. As good as it was, I can’t even explain how bizarre it was teaching these kids how to use a toilet. This is something we’ve used everyday our entire lives, but these kids have never had a flushing toilet. It’s amazing to think that something so simple to us is a complete novelty to them. It really makes you appreciate the little things like this that we have in the first world. It’s so great being the ones to change their habits though and to help bring something much needed to them too. Even if they don’t quite understand now, I know they’ll learn to appreciate it later.

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Other than the plastering today, we did a ton of painting as well. Thenji joined us at the worksite today and she certainly helped a bunch! We all put in a lot of painting today. We painted the outside walls white, we painted the inside again, we redid our goofy monster faces, we wrote cleaning instructions on the walls in paint, and we painted black silhouettes. The silhouettes are to signify the boys and the girls bathrooms and are just a cute way to show which is which. To finish off the painting, we put our team name up on the wall in the boys’ bathroom. It was actually really fun painting and talking all afternoon!

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Ben and Sean put in a lot of work digging out the pipeline in the sand. They outlined the entire area where the plumbing lines will go. It was a big job, but it’s going to make our job of putting in the tubes much easier tomorrow.

We took a bit of time this afternoon to do some filming for a promotional video for the Mozambique program. We need so many more people to come out and help us work at the school, and hopefully this video will help spark interest to more potential volunteers. We all had our chance to say a few things about the program and our experience and to reminisce about our time here. It was fun to talk about our time. It also made us really sad though because none of us want to leave…

After work, we went on a shopping spree! There is a whole line of markets near the beach, and they have so many cool trinkets, bracelets, carvings, fun pants, etc. We all wanted some Mozambique gifts, and that is definitely what we got! Some of us went a little wild on the spending train. Woops! They have so many cool things; we couldn’t help ourselves. We then rewarded ourselves for our hard work with some prawn cakes. They are kind of like crab cakes but with prawns, and they are one of the most delicious snacks in the world. We can’t imagine that they’re very healthy, but all the good stuff isn’t, is it.

When we arrived home, the boys (Grant and Sid) had been busy. They made us a whole shmorgisbourg! They seriously went all out. It was an amazing dinner. There was sausage, pork, mashed potatoes, roast carrots, butternut squash, salad, garlic bread and juice. Oh man, we are treated so well here. I honestly don’t know how we’re all going to leave. It’s going to be so difficult. Tomorrow will be another busy one, but it’s our very last day of work. You bet they’re going to get it all done even if it takes all day and night. I love these guys!

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Tonight we also played with fire a bit and messed around with Chris’ camera. We took hot coals from the fire and made designs with it using a special function on the shutter. We made so many cool designs!! We looked at the stars a bit tonight too. The sky is all lit up and it is absolutely gorgeous. I’ve never seen stars so bright in my life. Our day was spectacular. We hope tomorrow will be just as good, if not better. Until then!

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Tootles!

Tarbear

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