Wow, am I glad that it's the weekend! The past week has been a busy one- a few of the upper primary teachers were away on a workshop, so rather than teaching normal lessons to different classes over the week, I was given just one Grade 5 class to cover for 3 days in a row which I found quite full-on and exhausting. Also, not much cover work was left so it was a bit tricky filling up the time and planning lessons like maths which I'm not used to teaching! I really need to think of some more games to play on the blackboard- I think they're getting bored of hangman...
Anyway, last weekend the Otjikondo girls came down to visit, which was great- it was really fun to show them around our new home and introduce them to Riette and some of the kids. On Saturday we drove to the location to see the preparations for White Flag Day- there was a real party atmosphere with music blaring and food cooking on the streets. All the women wore traditional dresses- either white, red or green to represent the 3 Herero districts and the men looked very smart in old fashioned military uniforms as they rode horses around while the women paid their respects to the Master of Ceremonies. A group of Himba people, an indigenous tribe who are also Herero, were also there. They traditionally cover their bodies and hair in a mixture of ochre and fat to protect it from the sun and wear amazing hair accessories and jewellery- they look magnificent! They were also performing traditional singing and dancing which was great too. Later that day we went to the local kindergarten to sample the cakes for Oktoberfest (why drink beer when you can have cake?!) and met some really nice new people. On Sunday we unfortunately missed the actual parade down the high street but managed to catch a smaller number when they marched from the graveyard back to the location. It was a real spectacle- everyone looked amazing and the women were able to march in the highest heels you've ever seen!
In other news, we had a very temporary gap pet- some of the boys brought us a bird who couldn't fly, which we named Rio and made a makeshift cage for out of a cardboard box and a tablecloth. We took him out to walk and Micaela did wing exercises with him but he sadly died a couple of days later :( We also went to see a baby springbok at the Rest Camp on Friday- the owner rescued her because her mother had been killed by a leopard and she is the cutest thing! I must have smelt like the owner because she kept on butting my leg hoping for food! Yesterday we went to the Central Hotel to use their swimming pool which was really enjoyable and relaxing. Did a bit of sunbathing in preparation for Christmas in Cape Town!
I realise this post has hardly mentioned the actual teaching part but that's not particularly interesting in comparison to all the other amazing things we've done! Oh, and I also received my first load of letters on Friday which was so exciting! I loved hearing about what's been going on at home- I sometimes tend to forget that just because I've left doesn't mean life has stopped in England! So, all's well and I look forward to more letters!