Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Mom in Mombasa


This past week and a half has been full of new experiences for me.  Last week I got my first batch of new volunteers since becoming the coordinator for Olives, so it’s been all about getting people settled into their new lives as teachers.  It’s been extra special this time, because they aren’t just any batch of volunteers.  My mom and her friend have had the privilege of being a part of my inaugural class.

When I first started talking about coming to volunteer in Africa, my mom was interested in possibly coming out as well.  She was bummed that she couldn't make a visit work during my first time around, so when I decided to come back, she decided to make a trip as well.  She signed up to volunteer for 2 weeks on my project here in Mombasa.  She’s been a huge help at school, filling in and doing loads of odds and ends.  I think it’s been interesting for her to see my world in action and put faces to some of the names I’ve mentioned. 

I’ve been enjoying the chance to show her a bit of my life here in Mombasa.  I’m glad for her to see it, though I’m not sure if seeing it in person will make her feel better or worse about my living here.   It’s kind of a crazy place, commonly lacking in any Western notions of safety.  I think she’s enjoying her experience but I’m not sure she would want to stay for months.  Either way, I’m proud of her for coming out to see what I do and help out the kids.  Don’t know too many moms willing to do that. 

Aside from just figuring out the new bits of my job and showing my mom around, things for me are good.  I have so much to do before I leave, I can’t even believe it, so it’s a bit busy, but I’m finding balance between working and enjoying my last few months in Kenya.  I realized this weekend that four months from last Sunday I will be back in Nebraska eating turkey.  Well, hopefully, assuming all goes to plan.  I‘m not really counting down yet, but I am looking forward to spending the holidays with everyone at home.  I wish I could just bring my work back to Nebraska and have the best of both worlds.  Such is life, you can never have everything.  At least for this month I get to have a piece of home here with me.

1 comment:

Rob McEntarffer said...

Your mom is there! Lovely! Glad you're back in action there, and it sounds like more great work. Thanks for continuing to write on the blog, and I'll try to comment more often. I love reading about your work :)

If you are ever starved for reading material (ha!) I've been collecting articles about feedback, etc. Not sure if the "collection" is cohesive or makes sense to anyone but me, but I like doing it :)

http://www.scoop.it/t/feedback-formative-assessment-process-or-standards-based-grading

and another one, more philosophical (and fewer articles)
http://www.scoop.it/t/the-productive-gap