Today Alice and I decided to go to breakfast again. After last night’s “dinner” I was eager to try my toast with sugar again this morning (in hopes of curbing my peanut butter intake) and it was just as delicious as last night. After that we headed to the staff room. I (thankfully) didn’t have to cover any classes today, yet even without any covers, I only had one period free the entire day!
First I had maths, where Daniel and I (together, this time!) sat in on and assisted the form 3 core class. We went around checking to make sure that the students were doing the assignment correctly, and helped them with some of the more “challenging” problems. After that I had my one free period, which Daniel and I spent revising our SAT-prep curriculum in the library.
Then all the interns met with the lower 6th form during period 3, then with the upper 6th form during period 4. We told them a little bit about our respective High Schools, why we chose Harvard, and how/why we chose our respective concentrations/majors. At the end of the second session, a girl named Michelle came up to me and informed me that she, like me, wanted to study psychology and also that she had no previous psychology experience. When I told her that a) I had brought Professor Gilbert’s book to leave at the MaP library and that b) I would let her borrow the psychology 411 sheet that I bought back in Massachusetts, her eyes lit up! I hope she enjoys both of them, and I’ll be bringing the fold-out sheet to her homeroom on Monday.
After that Daniel and I taught our lesson to the MaP scholars. We all agreed that it works better when there are only two (as opposed to six) interns teaching the scholars, because otherwise we can really overwhelm them. They seemed to really appreciate our general tips, although we did have to rush a little towards the end because we were running short on time.
Next I had library duty, and then we were all going to eat at Bean Bag/Pot (the café on campus) but lunch actually looked good today (chicken and baked potatoes), so I suggested that we save the money and eat in the dining hall, and everyone was glad we did! The woman serving us food actually gave me a ton of food (like always), but today it ended up working out perfectly because I just shared my whole plate with Jennifer!
At 2:30 we headed off to Old Naledi to help distribute food (as part of the “organization” that is Caroline Desai). Caroline said she couldn’t come with us, though, since a) it would have caused too much of a scene (apparently she is basically treated like a celebrity there since everyone knows she comes bringing food) and b) she had to watch her son’s athletics meet.
So all six interns went with Karin and Dume (two of the people who work for Mrs. Desai) to distribute food to four families. Each one was heartbreaking in their own way. The first was a daughter who had just lost her mother to brain cancer. The poor woman was also having knee problems, and Dume was able to drive her to the hospital when we dropped off food for the next family.
Kisto was a son to the next mother we visited. He is a quadriplegic, meaning he can’t move his arms nor his legs due to cerebral palsy. Unfortunately, in order to make enough money, his mother has to work every day and must leave Kisto in the house by himself (the only reason why she can do this is because he can’t move by himself, but even still, it’s heartbreaking to think about this poor kid left alone for hours on end). We then visited Ogaufi, whose head is growing (but the rest of her body isn’t). Finally we stopped at Pako and Segolame’s house, who live with their grandmother since their mother abandoned them. While it was tough to see these hard living conditions, I’m very glad I went and was able to “help” these families, even though it was just bringing them food.
Afterwards we had dinner, and then played many rounds of contact (the word game) on the way back to the annex. At 7, we headed over to Mr. Taylor’s house (which is on campus) since he invited us over to play scrabble. We had heard rumors of wine, dessert and fresh fruit from other interns/people on campus. When at first he brought us to his living room with just a scrabble board on the table, you could tell our hearts kinda sunk a little (but hey, it was mostly our fault for having expectations that were too high!)
But then he came out with a tray filled with wine and juices and we got happier. Then he brought out strawberries (!!) and Daniel later told me that he practically saw me tear up with joy. Seriously, though, I was ridiculously excited for normal fruit, and, even though it was a small container of strawberries, it was better than nothing.
THEN, as if this wasn’t enough, he brought out a second, and then third container of strawberries. I think I actually had at least 20 strawberries last night, and I regret nothing. On top of that, the wine was exquisite (from South Africa), and then he brought out dessert which was simply amazing – malza pudding.
All in all, it was a perfect night – Alice and I (well, mainly Alice) won scrabble by almost 100 points, we got to chat with Mr. Taylor, one of his cats even spent some time on my lap, and of course the food and drink was lovely. A spectacular end to an action-packed week!
TGT: 1) strawberries, strawberries and more strawberries 2) talking to Michelle about psychology 3) getting quality cat interaction time at Mr. Taylor’s house