This weekend we discovered that, if we walk to the side of the house and look up, we can see the milky way from our front yard. So that’s pretty neat. Hopefully I will be able to trick my camera into taking a photo of it.
On Saturday we played bingo at Tautua’s house. There are no restaurants, bars, clubs, bowling alleys or anything like that on Ta’u, and so, naturally, everybody loves bingo. Once a month, Tautua and his family host bingo at their house; I heard a rumor that the always have the best prizes so we went. It was actually pretty fun. Everyone sits around the fale in front of the house with these big wooden or cardboard slats in their laps. You have to bring glue to glue your bingo card to the board since it’s so windy. Tautua’s son Jedi (Jed-ee not Jed-i) was the first caller and (for us, the palagi in attendance) he called in both Samoan and English, but after that it was all in Samoan. It turned in to a real test of how well we know our Samoan numbers.
This weekend I also discovered that I am pretty terrified of deep water, which was awkward and somewhat embarrassing. (When I say “deep” I mean just like 30-60ft. I thought it was 30 but a local said 60. Who knows?) After bingo we went swimming in the wharf and I thought, even though I know I get a little weird if I can’t touch ground, that I’d just swim around to the other side. I was fine until I looked down and realized how far I was from the ocean floor. I had the same panicky sensation I have when I’m on a high cliff or balcony. So I got out of the water for a little while to stop being a scaredy cat. Mitch and I walked over to this awesome little stretch of sandy beach for a little while and I found a whole lot of sea glass and calmed down. Doug (another palagi teacher here who is not with WorldTeach) brought a spear over so I got into the shallow water to try that out. Spearfishing is so much fun but it’s pretty much impossible in the daytime (at least for the unexperienced). Wes is going to buy a spear soon and then we can go at night with Lionel. Lionel took Wes out the other day so Wes could just observe. They brought back a ton of fish and some lobsters. Wes cleaned the fish and made oka and then ate some fresh lobster Sunday after church.
My students have been impossible lately so I’m trying to change up my teaching style a little bit. I feel like somethings work really well in some subject, but later I’ll try a similar tactic and completely lose their attention. It gets frustrating. They just won’t stop talking to each other. Constantly. All day. So I’m spending a lot more time trying to come up with hands-on activities that get them out of their desks and/or out of the classroom. Also, last week I crammed a ton of stuff into my lessons and of course everything took way longer than I thought. So this week I’m breaking things up a bit more and trying a lot more kinesthetic activities. My classroom is set up now and I have all my bulletin boards up. I love how excited they get when I make a change in the classroom. They always tell me how pretty everything is, haha. Today one of my students thanked me for teaching her about something. How cute is that?
Well I am exhausted and need to walk home… Here are some photos! Some of these are from my first day on this island (including the plane ride over); I can’t figure out how to re-order the pictures and there may be duplicates from another post but here they are anyway. Enjoy!