Scottish Charity Number: SCO36069

22nd November 2011

Cycling Fun by Naomi Dunphy

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So if the whole You are what you eat thing is true then I am definitely the biggest mango in the entire world! Seriously I think my record for one day is 7 and they are not that small but since they are free and right there then I cant complain plus I really love them!

Anyway this month saw me start working in the clinic in the village. Its really good and its dead interesting – not literally. Ethel who is in charge is really good at explaining stuff and takes the time to show me everything she is doing so thats a bonus. This month has also seen the end of my teaching standard 6 and 7 which was actually quite sad but I have still got my sports classes so have not lost everything. This loss was the result of the form 4 and teachers results eventually coming out. This means firstly that Modesta has gone back to school, which isnt so good as she is practically my big sister. It also means that there are now 10 trainee teachers at the school which is crazy as there are only 9 classes and they only let them teach in 5 of them so there are 2 trainee teachers to each class and then a normal teacher too mind you maybe now they actually comply with Scottish Regulations of teacher to student ratio!

Since my last report we have had 2 deaths, which is really sad. The first was one of the teachers which is a big blow as she was really good and such a nice lady then less than a week later one of the kids from the Dawn Centre died. He was only 3, but at he same time he couldnt move or talk or actually do anything so not really sure how I feel about it as being a Christian Im sure he is now up in heaven running and chattering away so its kind of a weird one.

Yesterday I went to visit one of the girls that I got to know when I was here in 2007 who now has a baby. 5 of us borrowed bikes and went away up into the hills. We could only borrow 4 so as one of the bikes had a seat on the back – the Bicycle Taxi guys use this -two of the girls shared which was really funny to watch but resulted in us walking & pushing the bikes half the way. We had a really nice time with Mifa (mother) and Charity (baby) then we started heading home. In the meantime we had gained 3 more people, which resulted in me giving a little girl a backie, three going on the bike with the seat and two going on another bike, which also had a seat. This seat however was clearly for decoration as not that far along the whole back wheel bent in half. We managed to bend it back ish and then walked until we came to a bunch of houses and I was told we had arrived. As we had already been to visit the girl I had set out to see, I was a little confused as to what we had arrived to do! Then a good half an hour later I was told it was an engagement party. When I asked whose, no one knew! I actually love that about Malawians! It doesnt matter if you actually know the people or not and its exactly the same with weddings. Anyway, after a bit I decided -true to my Scottish ways -that we couldnt intrude anymore and that it was time to head home. We still had ages to go though so we ended up strapping the broken bike onto the back of the bike with the seat and then two of us gave backies to the other two (by this time we had lost our hangers on). Seriously, my legs and arms were shattered when I got back, partly because the rest of the way was up hill, partly because Francis is a lot heavier than the girl from before and partly because he didnt like to sit still and was permanently leaning round to look at stuff and man is that hard to balance a bike like that! I shouldnt complain though as I saw some guys with pigs on the back of theirs and Im pretty sure when they were told to sit still they would keep on moving unlike Francis who listened for at least 10 seconds! Anyway when we got back the village was deserted as everyone was out at a wedding and guess what? Yeah, they didnt know the couple! It makes me giggle. By the way, I should have explained that Francis is basically my shadow which I dont mind as he is really funny and finds out all the gossip for me which isnt too hard as Malawians love to gossip! Anyway he is like my adopted brother; so much so that he calls himself Francis Dunphy and refers to me as chimwalie anga which means my sister as opposed to just chimwalie which is just a polite way of referring to a girl of my age.

Anyway thats all for now.

Naomi. x

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