This past week was the first really busy one since I have been back and next week is gonna be a straight-up doozy, so I am taking this quiet minute on a Saturday morning to pen this post and then it's off to the pool for a lil' fun in the sun.
On Tuesday, Gasto and I gathered our various children - his daughter Theresa who is going into Standard Four, and Vumi's daughter Grace (my ward, as it were) who is going into Nursery "C" since she is still too young to enter Standard One (she just turned six!) - and marched off to Holili, up near the Kenyan border where the School of Ritaliza of Mt. Carmel is located.
You might recall from this blog entry last year - http://toanafasi.blogspot.com/2016/01/bucket-list_19.html - which recounted our inaugural sojourn out to Ritaliza for Grace's first year of boarding, presumably Nursery "B" in which she earned the marks below.
Although she grabbed 4th place in her class (out of how many children, I am not sure), either she REALLY hates sports or she has a terrible personality! I'm sure it's the former if she's anything like I was in grade school. Climbing ropes and playing "Capture the Flag" were the banes of my elementary existence. And like me, G is rocking out the humanities: her reading and language scores are through the roof! Proud aunty, I am....
Just like last year, we were accompanied by Mongi, Vumi's widower and G's dad as well as Hyasinta. We also took along Teacher Glory who was brought into Toa Nafasi primarily as a caretaker for G during the time she spends in Msaranga. Happily, it turned out she was a worthy teacher and so she got a job out of the sitch as well. Gasto's adopted daughter, Helen, also came with us, a lovely girl who just finished Form Four and is awaiting the results of her national examinations.
UNLIKE last year, however, it was Gasto who got all riled up by the severe matrons who were doing the children's intake. I feel like this process is made more difficult by the nasty matrons and could potentially be done in shorter time than say, the four hours we were there waiting.
Last year being G's first year and us not knowing what to expect, we had all sorts of issues acquiescing to their demands. Clothes, toiletries, school supplies, everything is up for discussion and debate. Why this soap and not that? Names must be sewn into clothes in a certain way; if it's not up to snuff, then down to the nearest outpost to find a seamstress to do the work properly.
They were not too kali (stern) with us this time, but they really gave Gasto a run for his money. He had bought Theresa the best of everything and her suitcase was the envy of every student there, yet the matrons went batty over everything from her daftari (notebooks) to her chupi (underwear). It was hot and dusty and there were parents and kids and younger sibs all over the lawn. They had not thought to provide lunch or even bottles of water, so everyone was passing out and the kids were acting up and general chaos ensued.
Finishing up with G early, we had to wait on Gasto who was truly given the run-around, and lost his temper a couple times, which I thoroughly enjoyed. (Since I am usually the ranter/raver, it was nice for a little role reversal. Also good to know Gasto is a human being and not the unflappable superman he often projects.)
Hyasinta and I sat on the grass and gossiped until I complained my matako yamechoka (my bum was tired) and got up to take selfies with G, who introduced me to all her little friends, and was very pleased to be able to show off her mzungu aunty.
We didn't get out of there until darn near sundown and, of course, in keeping with the ireful tone of the day, Gasto (the most careful driver ever) got a speeding ticket on the way home. Still, mission accomplished: two little dumplings back at school and a bunch of tired adults headed home to empty nests.
Thank goodness for Drogo!