Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Cabinets and Chameleons

Life continues to be moderately full, dawn to dusk with family, work, and recreation.  

I have been guest-teaching the Chodort carpenter class for the past few weeks, as they've been doing a unit on cabinetry.  I taught the same unit last year but wasn't satisfied with how it turned out, so have tweaked a few things this time around.  The students seem more serious this year than last year--all hard workers.  Because most of them will find jobs in "the field,", they mostly use hand tools.  They take unwanted hardwood offcuts from the Production Unit and plane them down to size by hand--which can be very time consuming, especially when they can't afford to eat lunch!  One day I bought buns for morning tea for the class--they all disappeared quite quickly.

I offered to take any students who wanted help to the Production shop, where we would use the power planers.  A few students took me up on it.  They are starting to learn about the machines at this point in their course, so it is a good time to put them to practical use.

The year's course is ending soon--the instructors have cutting lists for final exams, and Graduation is in mid-December.  It's gone by quickly.  We will be away for regional meetings, so unfortunately I will miss grad this year.

The school that Kate is registered at in Canada requires portfolios for Term 1, which is ending soon.  So last week I did a lot more organizing than teaching.  I've been taking photos of Kate's work, organizing lists of books she's read, etc.  I even did an entire Science unit on Force and Motion in one afternoon, after Michelle noticed I had been doing the introductory unit all term!

Also on Mondays, I take half an hour with Mr. Lwiindi, our gardener, and ask him to help me learn Tonga.  I direct the lessons; usually he helps me read simple children's books in chiTonga and then I ask about different words or get him to repeat so I pronounce things better.  I'm still learning very slowly, but it's at my own pace so I don't get too bogged down with extra information that I can't absorb.

I've had a bit of time to work on my second homemade guitar, read a few books, play Settlers with Michelle and others, play Angry Birds on the iPad, and play with the dog.  Michelle and I got away for dinner and a movie in Lusaka to celebrate our 11th Anniversary.

And lastly, hot season has peaked (I hope!) and the rains have started slowly. We haven't had any monster rains here yet, but just enough to take the edge off the heat while increasing the humidity. We must have had a month straight of 30+ degree weather by now. With the rains will come new and strange bugs, ants, and frogs. Here is a picture of a dead chameleon that was on the road the other day.