Monday 27th October
Day one of school… We had breakfast, scrambled eggs, rice and a piece of bread with Piña (pineapple) marmalade.
At 7:15 we were off to school. At the first stop Leendert and I got out. We walked through the courtyard and met with Mathilde Cartagena. She us a charming lady from Isabela originally.
We walked into the first class. Concrete North and South walls, East and West are ½ wood, ½ open to the elements. The roof is corrugated plating. Old furniture from the 70-ies, probably repainted 3 to 5 years ago. One white board, teachers bring their own pens and erasers.
The first class consisted of about 24 kids in ‘free flowing’ uniform. Leendert and I got introduced, and after each kid stood up to say “good morning my name is…” . 20 min later we sat outside on small benches under a tree to help them read and pronounce the words correctly.
After this first class we had a short break and I discussed with Mathilde what was next. She showed the English lab. It was undoubtedly modern in the 70’ies. Cubicles with old headphones but clearly in disrepair.
Class two, after the obligatory intro, Mathilde tried to get a discussion (question and answer) to take place. Lots of laughter, simple exploratory question. Eyes quickly diverted to Leendert, with much giggles from the girls. The session went so well that she abandoned the ‘describe your house’ exercise. Time flew past.
Next we were off to another government school (two blocks away over sandy road). We arrived during their break and awaited the start. Already on the playground it was clear this was a slightly rougher environment.
The forth and final class Leendert sat in the back doing his homework. It took place in a dilapidated language lab, but the group was very smal (about 7 kids) and it was filled will laughter and girls eyeing Leendert again.
Upon return home we had lunch. Lobster soup, followed by rice and some fish & gue which I did not care for too much. After an afternoon nap, we went to the beach. Kids playing in the sand and in the waves, while pelicans kamikaze dive next to them, sea lions play in the vicinity, and a stingray and iguana saying a quick hello.
After a tuna (and rice) dinner we took a small stroll through town and went to bed. Not bad for a first day on Isabel!