Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Students are Coming, the Students are Coming!

Hello again!

It's Sunday. On our calendar of calendars, Sunday is "Students Arrive" day. I've never celebrated "Students Arrive" day. I've never attended "Students Arrive" day. I've actually never even heard of "Students Arrive" day. No wonder I have no idea what to expect.

This is simply new school year number sixteen for Jessica Mae. New school number four. BUT I've always been included in the "students" part of "Students Arrive" day. Why is it that when I am finally made aware of an occasion as momentous as "Students Arrive" day (it's on a printed calendar, after all), I am no longer a student? Tough luck, I suppose.

Strangely enough, I've been looking forward to S.A. day. In the week that I've been here at MAA, I've realized that this year is going to be student missions + task force + camp staffing all rolled up into a neat-looking spring roll. The apprehension of biting into the unidentifiable, strange task remains, but the curiosity and anticipation of finding out what is hidden in front of me is growing.

I can't wait for faces.

It's just like camp Sunday: kids from all over are arriving and unpacking all manners of suitcases from the trunks of all sorts of vehicles. Getting ready for an activity/week of camp/year of school is the worst part. Once the people show up, things get interesting. No longer will I be expecting "students" at P.E.; I'll be expecting Anna and Christopher and Sam. I won't be dreading tutoring the D, F, and I science students; I'll be looking forward to helping Susie and Jonny understand some pretty interesting stuff more clearly. I won't have to supervise couples, but I'll get to keep thinking of new ways to help Alice and Joe find positive avenues to express their feelings (oh, boy).

In other news:
I've done a few interesting things since my last email. The SMs ate out 3 times in 24 hours. Ha. Italian, Indian, and Ethiopian. No Kenyan yet...figures.
A little further down the Food & Flavors page comes a retelling of Jessica and Tyson's first experience with passion fruit. Tyson found the small, dark, hard fruit outside his apartment and decided to share. We cut open the little black ball and found a clump of yellowish-orange, juicy seeds inside. Consistency: slimy frog eggs. Flavor: sour! with a bit of sweet. Rating: 2 out of 5 stars. Likelihood to try again: 0.94.

Yes. I took this picture of a Maasai giraffe. :D
And Lake Naivasha! How could I forget? On Sabbath, all of the staff and their families loaded up the bus and headed out to Lake Naivasha, a large lake in the Rift Valley, a two-hour drive from the school. It's only 115km, but the insane number of speed bumps, crowding street vendors, and livestock doesn't allow anything faster. I'd probably never take my car some of the places this bus goes...sheesh. Anywho, before this trip, I'd seen no wildlife larger than a crane. In just the first fifteen minutes, however, I saw zebras, giraffes, impalas, and monkeys! After our potluck under the greedy monkey-infested trees – boys' dean Richard took the slingshot to a couple monkeys to scare them away from the food – we headed out for a long hike across the savanna and saw more giraffes, more zebras, waterbucks, and even hippos! An awesome experience.

Ok. Time to go meet with the science teacher to get my lab/class schedule! Woohoo! We're almost there. Registration tomorrow and classes start on Tuesday. Thanks for all of your prayers for lots of patience and energy as my first week as staff at an Adventist academy begins! Hoo-ah. I think the roller coaster has finally reached the top of the first hill. Hold on!

P.S. I just posted pictures on my Facebook! Here's the link.

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