Sunday, 3 March 2013


It's Sunday evening. I've completed my Kirundi excersises. Translated: Fasha abakorbga kurima mu bitoke. (into English) Help the girls hoe the bananas. Translated: Hoe well in your (s) big garden. (into Kirundi) Rima cane mu murima wawe munini.
You need to know that hoeing is a big thing in Burundi, hence it is one of the first verbs learnt. I'm still looking for my first opportunity to say to someone, 'Hello, you are hoeing well.'

I've marked all my literacy books. The next school job, is to plan next week's lessons. Then put together a letter asking for help for our great Easter Fayre. It is being organised by Year 6. My job is to take all the children's drafted letters and combine the best bits to form one letter!
So what to do next, that's the question.

' What about a Blog?' . I've had a week off, due to flu. But I'm better now. No excuses. But I think I have developed, Post Flu Blog Syndrome. What does PFBS involve? Well it means every time I think about composing a Blog, my mind goes blank and all I can think of is lying in bed doing nothing for a week. I think about all the exciting things I didn't do over Half-Term. All the places I haven't been. All the photos I haven't taken. Then my Post Flu Blog Syndrome persuades me that I just can't Blog today. And so it has been for the last week or so.

But as you can see, today I am fighting it. I am trying to rise above it, drag myself out of the pit of self-pity. I am limping into the realms of ............. oh dear PFBS, hit again and I can't put into words what I'm trying to say.

So, PFBS would have me believe I have been nowhere. As would my regular visits to Facebook. Where I read of trips here, there and everywhere by all and sundry.
But on reflection I realise that, the 4000 mile journey to get me here in January does count as a bit of travel. And, I have been to a couple of concerts, recently. 

One took place in the garden in the pink blossom (sorry don't know it's technical name)tree. It was during my bout of flu and I had gone to sit in the garden for a while like a good sufferer. I looked into the tree and suddenly it was full of tiny Sunbirds. The first act was aerial acrobatics by pairs of juvenilles. Demonstrating their abilities to weave in and out of the branches at high speed, in formation. This was followed by some individual hovering displays by a beautiful male and it's mate. The finale was a spectacular performance by two males. This very simply involved sitting on a branch and moving subtly to show the various sheens of colours their apparently black feathers could produce. It's hard to capture the beauty on the camera, but I did manage to get a bit of a shot of the finale.

This the same bird as the one in the picture above. As the light catches it, the feathers change colour!

The other performance was maybe not quite a concert. It was more of a Comedy with opportunities for audience participation.  It could be entitled, Banana Bread Removals.
Banana Bread Removals involves a plate with banana bread crumbs and 100's of the tiniest ants ever. To attend the performance all I have to do is leave the plate on my desk for 15 to 20 mins and the performers arrive! They then take it upon themselves to remove all the crumbs from the plate, across the desk, up the wall  and out of the air bricks above the window. Where is the comedic value in that you ask? Well.
Firstly, there is the 'One crumb, Four ant' senario. The crumb bounces around as each ant snatches it off the other and makes a run for it. It's great to watch and see who gets the crumb in the end.
Secondly, there is the 'Help I can't see where I'm going' senario. When an over ambitious ant picks up a crumb twice it's size. This usually results in random wandering and bumping into other ants and obstacles. Those crumbs look great as they appear to walk themselves off the plate and across the desk.
Thirdly, we have the, 'Excuse me can I help you with that crumb?' scene. I have had to guess at the dialogue that goes with this scene. But I think it is something like this:
Crumb Carrying Ant: Phew this is heavy!
Hands Free Ant: Would you like some help there mate?
CCA : Ah no thank you. This is my crumb, thank you.
HFA: Come on mate, just let me take the strain. No point in you doing it all by yourself.
CCA: I said no thank you and I meant no thank you. Go get your own crumb.
HFA:  Alright keep your antenea on. It's a long way up that wall and you don't want to be dropping that crumb half way up.
CCA: (Shouting) I said no. Now let me past and go get your own crumb, you lazy, good for nothing, not-carrying-a-crumb ant.
Finally, there is the 'My SAT nav has broken' senario. This is the one where I get to join in. As the ants go and down up the wall, they create quite a clear path. If I take my somewhat sweaty finger and draw a line across their path on the wall, it creates a great scene of chaos. The traffic coming down the wall hits the line of sweat, rebounds in horror and charges back up at double pace. The traffic heading up the wall hits the line and starts running in frantic circles wondering what to do next. Eventually, either one ant discovers a way around the line or it dries up sufficiently to allow SAT nav's to start again. It's great fun and nobody gets hurt in the process.
I have enjoyed the Ant comedy a number of time recently. Once it even threatened to make me late for work!
Come to think of it I have also taken part in a horror movie. Well a horror without the movie. I did my own version of, Sleeping with the Enemy.
It was a stiffling hot night, no way I could have any covers. There was no power, so I had been reading by candlelight. All was quiet and peaceful, when I blew out the candle and laid down to sleep. I was just drifting into oblivion, when there came the dreaded noise in my ear. Something along the lines of zeeeeeeeeezzeeeeeeeeettttt! A mosquito. I clapped my hand to my ear, I must have got it. No sound. Drifting off to sleep. Zeeeeeeeeeeezzeeeeeeeeeeetttt! I'm awake, alert. Electric racket swiping around my head. Nothing. My ankles start to itch. My arms start to itch. I pull the sheet over me. The heat generated within two minutes is suffocating. I fling the sheet off. I'm itching all over. With my racket in hand I doze. Zeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeezzeeeeeeeeeeeeeettttt!!!!!! And so it goes on all night. If only I could switch the light on and find the little blighter. My racket runs out of charge. I've covered myself with calomine cream, but still I itch all over. The rest of the night goes along the lines of  Zeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeezzzzzzeeeeeeeeeeetttt, scratch, Zeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeezzzzeeeeeeeeeeeeettttt, scratch, Zeeeeeeeeeeezzzzzeeeeeeeeeeettt...............
By the morning I had bites on my bites. I was not a happy bunny at all.
And here is the answer:-
I've slept on my own ever since!!
So now I think we can safely say,  I have successfully beaten my PFBS. Not sure I'm going to get any work done now, but never mind. I can always do it tomorrow. TIA (this is Africa)


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