Writer’s Block

Various things (aboulia*, laziness, general lethargy etc.) meant I didn’t actually write a blog yesterday.

It’s proving hard to team-teach with Miss Lowe: not because we disagree on methodology or anything, but because she leaves it all to me. She doesn’t leave the room, but takes little part other than sometimes helping with the practical. I really want us to be more of a double act, but she waits for me to start and is obviously reluctant to join in. I suppose it’s difficult for her: she is inexperienced and faced with someone she may feel is constantly assessing her performance, whilst she works in a language with which she’s not 100% familiar. Then there’s all the cultural nuances. I’m going to have to work on it.

I’m much in demand on Saturday. The Ministry of Youth and Sports (MoYS) is organising some sort of youth sporting event at the stadium over the road and the PIA is involved. Apparently most of the staff are going en masse and guess who is expected to go as well!I’m going to be provided with a school sweatshirt or something for the parade: I hope that doesn’t mean I’ll have to run or anything. A group of us went to a similar event few years ago: surely this one can only be better!

Those staff not at the sports will  be involved in Angelic’s wedding. I’ve not mentioned Angelic so far this year, because she’s not been around. She is a wiry, husky-voiced young(ish) Gambian woman we meet here each year. She teaches Home Science, as they call it, and used to represent The Gambia as a sprinter, but isn’t trying to fit in the Stadium as well as far as I know. She has a small boy. Apparently the wedding will take place at the church first (she’s Christian) and then the reception is to be held at the PIA in the evening. Once again, guess who’s invited… It’ll be a busy day.

Marriage to husky-voiced women is obviously in the air. Last year I met Rohey’s “ward”, Binta: a husky-voiced young woman who was studying here. This year she’s getting married – at the end of this month. Whilst age-wise it’s all well above-board, it disappoints me to see her getting married so young (early twenties at most). Rohey brought her up to see me yesterday afternoon and she was obviously – and not surprisingly – bored rigid: either that or she does a very good imitation of it. I imagine that the idea was that I might offer her some money. (Note to Mrs M: I didn’t!) Apparently she’s not known her husband-to-be very long, though Rohey tells me he’s a good man. That will be an Islamic wedding, I expect, but the young couple apparently have a house / flat and will not be doing the traditional thing of moving into the husband’s family’s compound with uncles, aunts, grannies etc. – and the step versions of them!

I was at the reception for an Islamic wedding last year and it was interesting. I included it in the 2012  blog, so I won’t go through it again.

Roddy’s group of adults went to Pen Yem(?) yesterday to see a bee-keeping project they are supporting. Apparently it’s going fairly well, though the termites are proving as voracious there as everywhere else and the legs of the beehives are being attacked.


*I believe aboulia is a medical/psychological term for a lack of willpower. Many years ago – when you and I were young, Maggie – the school where I worked received an explanation of absence from a mother who said he daughter had been off school due to a bout of aboulia. It sounded serious enough that no-one questioned it, until the then Depute got his dictionary out…



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