An Unplanned Visit

The unplanned visits are the best, I thought, as our guests were leaving.

I was thinking about the anxiety in preparing for guests. The long list of dishes. Checking that the place is “spick and span”. Getting out the best crockery, cutlery and glasses. The dishes planned, ingredients purchased, time set for preparing and cooking, then the wait.

‘Are they coming on time? When will they get here?’

‘Is the room temperature okay: open windows or air conditioner?’

‘Will there be enough seats: should we bring in some more?’

I guess these days all’s changed and most planned visits have a wait.

Last night our friends from Arizona popped in to say, ‘hello and goodbye’ They had travelled to Ghana for a different purpose and would not leave without seeing us. Masked up, they arrived around dinner time . I quickly put together a “Tapas-like” meal for us.

Our last supper perhaps, as they leave this evening. It was a short visit, our friends, their friends from down our road joined us at the tail end of the visit. There were many clicks, appreciating the brief visit and excited as we had not seen each other for many years. The clicks stored the memories, there was no stress, everyone was delighted.

From a Grateful Writer

Every year I get braver and more courageous with my words and stance as a writer. I’ve learned a lot from my many mentors here. I also have a long list of different moves as my ‘go to’ on a ‘dry’ day.

Where did this month go? It flew by without us noticing.

Is it because we are busy with the ‘on-campus’, ‘online’, ‘hybrid’ or ‘concurrent’ teaching?

Next March, all these words or some of them may be a thing of the past.

I’m grateful to the Two Writing Teachers, and the friends who always gave me such impactful feedback.

I’ll end with ‘Me da mo ase paa,’ ‘thank you very much’ in Twi a language spoken in Ghana, West Africa.

Until next March, my goal is to keep writing.

#SOL21 #SOLSC

The Rainy Season is Here

During the rainy season all the plants bloom, become lush as one’s garden tends to look like a tropical forest.

My visit to R’s garden yesterday was another delight. Every visit unearth’s gifts. Plants that I have not particularly noticed before. I have the pleasure of enjoying the plants and leaving them there. It reminds me of how we sometimes enjoy other people’s babies.

Calathea
Calathea Roseoptica
Aglaonema
Caladium

Yesterday I was drawn to plants with coloured or patterned leaves. As I looked through my photographs I noticed I had been attracted to plants with decorated leaves.

The rains during the rainy season are strong and fall in drapes. The rains are always refreshing as they soak up the heat. We wake with a cool breeze and fresh earthy smells. We’d rather that, than the hazy morning sunshine that is sometimes so scorching you forget the time of day it is.

So during this season as the plants are gratified so are we.

#SOL21 #SOLSC

Loudly

Loudly

the putter of rain

changed the atmosphere

both inside and out

Loudly

the din of rain

made me move

rushing outside to the lines

Loudly

he shouted to remind me

of the laundry hanging outside

soaking the large drops of tropical rain

Loudly

I yelled back to confirm

I was on my way

to the backyard, basket in hand

Quietly

I sang to myself whilst

plucking the pegs hurriedly

off the bedsheets and pillow cases.

Pexels.com
#SOL21 #SOLSC

Students: Problem Solvers

During a lesson this week, we encouraged students to help us with a new technology tool we knew would help us publish and celebrate the end of our unit. What transpired motivated students and gave them so much ownership.

At the end of the day, when we asked what the best part of their day was, the students enthusiastically shared that lesson, when they were the problem solvers.

These experiences, are teaching us many things and I have a long list of the learning that I believe happened:

That nobody knows it all.

We are finding solutions together and can rely on each other’s expertise.

We should not be complacent and use only the tools we are familiar with.

There is strength is collaborating, using the know how that individuals in the room have.

That we are working as a team.

Listening to each other’s ideas.

Trying things out in different ways: when we did that we realised the first and second methods did not work, we tried a different way.

About patience, reliance, humility and trust.

In the physically distanced room, it felt like a community, the quote “It takes a village to raise a child,” came to mind.

The students were being exposed to a life-long and authentic experience which should be transferable and motivating.

#SOL21 #SOLSC

Curly Locks

What does curly make me think about? Hair.

Well if I am to call my locks curly that would really be interesting, but I just do. My hair is tightly curled and ends up being thick and unmanageable. The thought of running a comb through it used to put me right off.

I sometimes tell my friends my hair is like a carpet: tightly woven, taut and dense. I so love my natural hair now, untouched and full of love.

When we were in our early twenties we straightened those curls which made the kinky turn silky. It was rather easy to comb and style. It harmed the natural beauty I know, as the hair line got brittle and sometimes shed like leaves.

As the years went by and the chemicals had done their damage we donned shorter hairstyles, that was the trend. We still styled, artificially curled and dabbed it with different creams.

I will not exchange my fifties natural curls now. Untouched, dotted with grey and softened by my daily pat of shea butter and natural oils!

#SOL21 #SOLSC

Notebook Celebration

This evening’s celebration is because of a considerable feat: the last leaf of my very first ‘official’ Notebook.

This has been an enjoyable ride till Day 79 of my ‘100 days of Note booking.’

Some days, I felt really empty and other days I was rather full. Full of words, ideas and innuendos.

I owe my commitment to my Teach Write colleagues and to M for the workshop and guidelines for the newbie I was.

Starting off thinking my notebook had to be perfectly manicured, I even dared to draw a few illustrations. Some of my drawings were renditions, others from my imagination, those interestingly turned out quite well.

Tomorrow, will be my day of cracking open my next (official) Notebook, hopefully it will be another enjoyable ride starting on Day 80.

#SOL21 #SOLSC

Work and Rain

My prompt for day nine was to use these words ; birch, salt, drip and wing for a scene.

What I loved about the ten day challenge was the time limit, to write. #10mins10days

Large tears of rain suddenly started falling, we knew it would rain when the skies had darkened from a distance and the darkness was slowly moving towards us. As we walked hurriedly from work towards the station, nobody stopped to chat, it was a swift wave at the regulars along the pavement. The newspaper seller looked disappointed as his customers totally ignored him, in their hurry to catch the train and dodge the rain.

The birch tree was shelter for many on rainy days. People would gather for a few minutes to avoid the rain, but today the ‘drip, drop’ of the rain pushed everybody towards a better shelter. 

The station master who normally greeted everyone in a loud butch voice was mute this evening. He had his work cut out. Moving the wet crowd along and keeping them moving. He had on a yellow raincoat that had wings. They looked like massive elephant ears, as he waved the wings moved. Actually, that helped him direct the passengers along. The rain continued falling heavily, causing puddles at the edge of the station floor. 

The floor tiles were getting muddy and slippery. The station master shouted to the guards: 

“Pass the salt!”

They all looked at each other.

“What would he be doing with that?” They smirked. 

He knew the salt would help make the floor less slippery. He poured batches of salt and spread it all over the edge, quickly.

That seemed to help keep his moving clients proceed quicker. Soon his job would be done. At the end of the rush hour, when he would take that heavy yellow plastic off and have a large cup of tea, for a well deserved break.

#SOL21 #SOLSC

My First Etheree: Zoom

My first etheree had to be simple. Interestingly, I noticed it sort of made sense reading it in reverse.

Zoom

It is

Engaging

Can be draining

When you have worked hard

In the morning with them

Instructing, interacting

On Wednesdays when we are all here

Joining break-out rooms expecting them

To participate in conversations

#SOL21 #SOLSC