Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Distance is Quite Simply Much Too Far For Me to Row, It Seems Farther Than Ever Before.

My second year begun much like I expected it: busy and chaotic and fun. I feel more like myself in my new village. Maybe it's because I feel safe, maybe it's because the town is a lot bigger, or maybe it's just because it's my second year. Who knows.

My knee problems seem to have subsided for the time being. Because my house is on the beach, I am frequently running alongside the Atlantic in the evenings. For the first time in six years my knee actually feels good when I'm running. And the only time I notice a missing ACL is when I'm coming down a huge mountain, which I try to avoid.

The volleyball program took an exciting turn over the summer. After completing our summer programs, I was introduced to a unique individual who is the President of the National Lottery in St. Vincent. After several meetings and proposal revisions, Mr. Sealley and I came up with a monetary plan that worked for both of us. And the Georgetown Saturday program got funded for an entire year. This means we can provide travel and food for the kids in the area who want to participate on Saturdays. There is still room for expansion in the program, but we took this as a huge step in the right direction. In the meantime, I am still working on writing a grant to expand the program throughout the Windward side of the island.

As for my work in the schools, it is forever challenging. Remedial reading tends to be a very complicated task, as there are many reasons why a child cannot read. Over the summer I spent a lot of time researching different philosophies and techniques and think I made a plan that would fit my students pretty well. Some days my students respond well, and others I'm just not sure what's going through their head. Patience is a virtue. I wrote that on my classroom chalkboard, although I think it was more for me than for them.

I am also picking up small projects here and there. I'm trying to organize a Saturday Beach Clean up for my area; the hurricanes brought all of the trash from the water and organized it not so neatly on our beaches. And there have been many opportunities to tutor kids within my area.

What I am most excited about, however, is my brief return home to the States in December. I am taking a much needed three week break to celebrate Christmas where it should always be celebrated: at home. I am ready to see my family and eat Mexican food. It has been way too long since I've experienced either.

I just hope the States is ready for me.

A happy childhood has spoiled many a promising life--Robertson Davies 'What's Bread in the Bone'