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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

all that jazz

Written at 11:14am
106 Degrees Fahrernheit
(Yep, that hot!)

Today is day two of midterms here in Yola for the AUN Charter School.  All tests have been written in both ways.  I have written and delivered them all to the students now.  We have one more day left, however, I have no more remaining!  Yay!  Now I just have to grade them and other assignments.  Boo!

So I have been busy today making papier mache pumpkins for the party.  It's not going as well as I'd like.  I, of course, should have been doing this a week ago.  Got lots to do.  I have to make a ton of caramel corn, literally, I have got to do a ton of shopping still.  We still have not gotten paid which makes me incredibly nervous because I have to buy the two lambs for Saturday and pay a ton of people.  Errgh!  My life is filled with little errands like going to the bank, changing money, searching for faro water, buying fabric, meeting the tailor, buying chicken, getting gas for the car, etc, etc.  Does the monotony of running errands ever end?  I don't think so.  Or at least not for me.  I am in serious need of having to have a heart to heart with myself to learn the art of saying "NO" or "enough is enough."  I am terrible at doing it for myself or others.  But I must because I am always running, running, running, somewhere, full steam ahead but I never actually achieve that big goal ahead of me.  It's like I'm running full steam ahead but going sideways.  This has got to change.  So this is my party which will be the catalyst to change.  I'm learning to delegate and to expect less.  Less is okay.  It's what happens when life gets in the way anyway.  I am not perfect and every moment of my day and life will certainly never be.  For example, today when the parent came barging into our office and instead of enjoying doing papier mache with my students we had to listen to a bitchfest, aka bitch slap to our faces, by said Parent.  It sucked.  But it's life and I need to learn to except that life is always flowing and changing and that I must expect and accept less than perfect.

Anyway, I will take photos tomorrow of paper mache making when I get the camera back from the Prof.

I am thinking of going on a Spring break from Nigeria trip.  Any advice as to where to go?  Should I go to the Juneau folk fest?  Should I go somewhere else?  London?  Paris?  Prague?  San Francisco for a workshop?  What do you think?  Advice...

Monday, October 26, 2009

too pooped to party

 10:40pm Nigerian Time
77 Degrees Fahrenheit


Just finished writing my last of SEVEN midterm exams.  I am watching One Tree Hill to relax, it's my latest television obsession.  The Prof bought me seasons one through three this weekend with a new dvd player.  Our other dvd players stopped working, probably from the electricity fluctuating up and down all the time.  Surprisingly the dvd player was cheap in my opinion, 5000 naira.  I think that's pretty good.

I had the Prof put some Ben Gay on my neck tonight because it's just killing me.  It must be something physical because I am not stressed right now.  I've been reading a lot lately and my list of books just keeps getting longer and longer.

The Part Time Indian book by Sherman Alexie.  Not sure what the title really is.  Reading to see if it's appropriate for a class.  So far I think so, with one exception of a page where they mention masturbation.


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night.  Forgot who it's by.  Finished it and loved it.


Of Mice and Men by Steinbeck, currently reading for a class with my student Bryan.

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd.  Re-reading for class so I can assignments.

The Crucible by Arthur Miller.  Again, a re-read for class. 


Shadows in the Sun by Ryzard Kupinscki (spelling) for a class as well. 

So that's what's going on for now.  Time to hit the hay, or hard foam!

Salamu Alaikun!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Another Friday Night and I'm in bed early! :-)

9:25pm Nigerian time
85 Degrees Fahrenheit

So it's another Friday night, other wise known as Pizza night here and I'm lying in bed already before 10pm and I am loving it!  I am listening to this week's Savage Love podcast and just perusing through some literature anthologies to get ideas.  Just looked at the current temperatures around places I care about and saw that it is snowing in Minneapolis!!  Snowing!  What I wouldn't give to see a little snow right about now.  I miss it.

Anyway, another busy weekend.  Gotta get up early to do some baking.  Then off to drop off the Professor at his Saturday class, collect Professor Carmencita, Professor Kim and Registrar Ron to go do Saturday things like shopping at the market.  After that I must get ready and head over to Ron's place in the Luxury Dorms where quiz night is taking place.  After that I will head over to the club for Mr. Sesugh's comedy routine.  Sunday will be filled with writing the seven exams I am giving on Monday and Tuesday for the midterms for the kids, yep, seven!  I also have yola yoga on Sunday as well.  That's the weekend.  I plan on taking lots of pictures tomorrow and Sunday, so I'll post when I can.  There'll be no internet most of the day tomorrow.  Apparently they are adding bandwidth!  I'll believe it when I feel the speed on my fingertips.  Come on Victor, get your act together!!!

So one week to the party.  The countdown is beginning!  Ahhhh!  Wish me luck!  8 days and counting down.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Some scenery from Nigeria



This tree is in Yankari National Park. We took this photo while on a safari and were attempting to find a 'shea' tree. I still don't know what one looks like, if we have them around here or not as well. Do you know? Send me an e-mail.


The view in Adamawa on your way to Gombe or pretty much anywhere out of Adamawa. It's so empty and beautiful. The road is horrendous but the views are spectacular.


This is the river Benue in Jimeta and this photo was taken by Nicole while she was here in April. She wanted a snap of the bundles. I love the photo. You can see some of the boats behind.


A Nigerian path in Sukur. This photo was taken by the Prof in July at Sukur UNESCO World Heritage site. I love how it makes you wonder where it leads...

oldies but goodies


This is an old picture from mid February when I went to Malam Hassan's marriage. I am holding Fadimatu, Labaran's little girl. She did not want to leave Mommy Kate's side that night. Ironically, I did not go to this wedding wearing this outfit, my skirt tore and Amina lent me something else to wear.


This is a photo of a 'kuka' tree, otherwise known as a baobab tree. This photo was taken at Sukur World Heritage site north of Yola by the Prof this past July. Kuka are my favorite trees here for many reasons. One, they are great trees to prevent erosion, some of the strongest water retainers of all trees, they don't have rings to tell age, which I find awesome. This tree could easily be over one thousand years old. The fruit have the highest amount of vitamin C and vitamin and A and D out of all fruit!

christmas comes early for kate in Yola

So I got home after an exhausting day today. Why I am not so sure however. Anyway, I said to the Prof and Labaran that I would run next door and check out what Yakubu had. Yakubu is the Yola version of Walmart except with Macy's prices. Anyway, so I went over and I hitr the motherload! I got two different types of mixed nuts! Mixed nuts in Yola?? Almonds and pistachios in Yola? Then I got like five different types of cadbury candy bars! Chupa Chups suckers! Anyway, I am so excited. I snacked on some already. Then I got home and it only got better. Wednesday is my favorite night. It's TV night for because I get to watch a double feature of NCIS, my favorite tv show as of late. But it was even better because the show just before it tonight was NUMBERS! My other favorite show! So I get a triple threat with chocolate. Come on. How lucky can a girl get in Yola? I am seriously thanking my lucky stars. Oh yeah, and the internet has come back and I'm almost finished downloading this weeks "This American Life" episode and "Savage Love" and the Bob Edwards interview with Nick Hornby. I'm so psyched. I know it was my birthday yesterday, but this is like Christmas!

cheers all!

The day after

83 Degrees Fahrenheit
2:25pm Nigerian Time
Written to the cricket in my window of my classroom, wait make that two cricket's songs

So a lot has been going on, as usual. I am now 29 and one day as Labaran reminded me this morning. It hasn't sunk in yet, maybe it never will since age is gradual. School is super busy. We are about to have the end of the quarter exams! Holy cow! We had country presentations yesterday! We've been preparing for the big party in 10 days! Making costumes, table cloths, etc. I think I'm going to do some paper mache decorations for the tables of some sort, I think. Today I even got conned into being a caterer this weekend.

Anyway, Carmencita threw me a lovely little birthday party dinner last night. Friday we are going out dancing. Saturday I have a comedy show to go to. Not to mention quiz night and yoga and belly dancing. ughhh. Does it ever settle down?

Anyway, the point of this post is things are moving forward, quickly as always, I don't feel any older, nor settled, nor like I have to worry about turning 30. What is thirty other than a social construct of expectations? What do you think?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

29

I am now officially 29 years old. Only 12 more months till 30. Still don't know if that's a good or bad thing, but this is for certain, it is inevitable.

We started reading "of mice and men' today. Today is Country Presentation day. So we'll be seeing presentations on Nigeria, Sierra Leone, two on Egypt and one on Cameroon. Also, we are watching "Pirates of the Caribbean" since it's adapted from "Treasure Island" which we finally finished. Woohoo!

Today during lunch we are going to celebrate my birthday. The prof, Labaran and I made pumpkin pie (from the pumpkin we baked this weekend), pumpkin carrrot cake, mango strawberry crisp, and guacamole and my one bag of tostitos scoops! Also, we are even going to have coffee! Yay!

Anyway, that's all for now. I am happy my birthday is finally here. Now I just gotta get through this party on the 31st. We are in the process of making costumes.

Happy Birthday to me!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Champions!

82 Degrees Fahrenheit
9:33pm Nigerian time

Tonight I had my first Yola Yoga class with Dr. Korie. It went pretty well actually. This surprised me. After that we had to rush to pick up the Artichoke dip I made and change our clothes and run back to Yola for Quiz night at Korie's as well. We made it there eventually and I was on Bill's, Ron's and Rohana's team. Well, tonight we were finally champions. Woohoo! It feels good to be back on top again.
Tonight, we made a big decision, well for us anyway. We've decided to we want to move to another compound, for many reasons though. We want to move to 10 flats, I never thought I'd say that, but it's true. We want to move. I'll list the reasons another time, but it's time to get back to this Treasure Island quiz.

Sunday Bloody Sunday

89 Degrees Fahrenheit
31 Degrees Celsius
9:06am Nigerian Time

It's Sunday morning here in Yola. I am in bed listening to music in bed and blogging, but I really should be typing up a Treasure Island exam, but before I can do that I have to read it! hahhaha. Yeah, really. This teaching thing is harder than I expected. I have three times the load than the Prof and in more ways than one. I teach more classes, more hours to those classes and they have to be more interactive. Yesterday, he had his first extremely interactive Computer Science class and was exhausted after an hour. I was like, what??? That's a sixth of my day everyday, not including it starts at 7:45ish and goes even longer when I hear, "Ms. Kate will you do PE with us today?" "Ms. Kate will you play tennis with us?" "Ms. Kate will you play water polo with us?" etc.
Anyway, today is another busy day for us. For school tomorrow at minimum I have read chapters 22-34 of Treasure Island and write the final. Ideally, I'd read some of the chapters we'll be doing tomorrow in class. Uggh. Also, we have yola yoga with Korie at 2pm and at 4pm at Korie's we have quiz night. I also have beans soaking for chili which I really need to make at some point. Man, the reason I understand most of my students is because I am just as good of a procrastinator as they are. Not too mention that I try and do to much. Maybe someday I'll learn to take on less, but for now, it's full steam ahead.
Did I mention that the cats broke a glass bottle last night in the middle of the night? Did I mention that our bathroom tub faucet will not turn off (water is a precious commodity around here) and we cannot find the shut off valve or get ahold of Titu the works and maintenance director. It's always a zoo around here no matter what!
I have to decide what I am making as a snack for quiz night tonight. Will I do artichoke dip or will I do brownies or both? What do you suggerst I make? The Prof is the moderator this week which means that he is not on my team again. The first time we played we won. We were team Mr. and Mrs. Palindrome. They split us up because everyone thought that we had an unfair advantage. Well, we were two against teams of four or six. The teams of four or six had at least two people per team minimum with PhDs totally outranking mine and the Profs, so we were like what? It's not the Profs fault he's walking encyclopedia or my fault that I chose to marry said encyclopedia. Seriously. So last week I was with Prof Charles and my oga Rani. We took last place. I am competitive and not happy about this at all. Today, the Prof is the moderator so we'll see what happens. Don't know who I'll have on my team today.
Yesterday was a crazy day as all Saturdays seem to be for me. Roasted 5 lbs of garlic, baked the pumpkin to puree it, made homemade pasta sauce and ate it, also roasted the pumpkin seeds. It was a yummy morning followed by a crazy busy afternoon. Checked out the children's lit workshop, hung out with Melba, went to the wine shop, followed by two hours of exhausting belly dancing where some folks were watching us that made me extremely uncomfortable, followed by 15 minutes in a very hot jacuzzi, then french fries with mayonaisse eating and baileys a drinking, a little dancing to the dj and then home to bed. This is our life in Yola.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

book list anyone?

Hey All,

So as m0st of you know I teach both middle and high school literature. I'm taking suggestions for any genre of literature. Give me your favorite books you read in high school, that you checked out from the library or some thing that's age appropriate. If it's not appropriate for all ages, mention which it is for... Please comment.

Some upcoming books we might read:

The Secret Life of Bees
Holes
The Hobbit (although cannot get a copy yet)
The House on Mango Street
The Crucible
Of Mice and Men
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part time Indian
A Raisin in the Sun
The Tell Tale Heart (read that one today)
Treasure Island (just finishing)
Purple Hibiscus
Mission to Kala

Suggestions please?

Na gode (thank you).

Either post a comment or send an e-mail. katherine.lawal@aun.edu.ng

take five


So I have said it before and will say it again. I need a new camera. it doesn't like taking photos at twilight, it doesn't really like to always take pictures during the daylight and it's never liked to take pictures at night. Anyway, this photo is of a new painting the Prof just bought me for my upcoming birthday on Tuesday. Yikes, Tuesday is soon and I turn 29!!!


Rama, my boss's hubby and one of my hubby's bestest buds here, who happened to even live in St. Cloud when we did gave me this pumpkin last Saturday. A fellow Indian chap here in Yola, well, actually in Numan, but that's neither here nor there grew it and gave it to him. So it's homemade pumpkin pie for my bday on Tuesday made by me. Anyone got a good recipe? So here's my current cornucopia, it was just Canadian Thanksgiving but not quite American Turkey Day! Soon though.


This is the not so little Lucky on the left and Einstein. They are looking kind of hardcore.

And of course, my bebe, the Beowulf. It's not the best picture, but he has not been up here in a while. So I figured why not throw one up!

the cat was calling me

Last night at around 2:13am I woke up. Not because we had no power, but because I heard what I thought was Lucky making a screeching yowl. So I searched for my cell phone and turned on the flashlight part, hence no electricity at our house from 2-4am. Then I went searching for the kitties. So first I found Lucky but then the screeching continued so I started to freak out but I had to go to the bathroom so I made a beeline for the bathroom. After that I went to tell the Prof and go to where I could really hear the yowling and realized that Einstein was dead asleep with the Prof. Anyway, so both cats were found and still no luck on figuring out where the hollering was coming from. I am pretty sure a kitty got onto the roof, crawled into a hole and is not stuck between our ceiling and the roof. In all likelihood it's one of Lucky's siblings since he came from outside of our house. So now we have the possibility of a cat dying in our ceiling. This is how we ended up with Lucky. He was dying under our trash can outside. Now, I have a cat that has crawled into the ceiling. This piebald cat orphanage has to quit, seriously. Thank god Basil wants a kitty. He might just get this one if we find it alive!

I'd post pics of the animals from last night but cannot find the adapter anywhere in my office.

Cheers!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Polo match


This is a photo of Mohammed Baba, a friend of ours who works for the chair of AUN's Board of Trustees, Mr. Ahmed Joda. Mohammed is the AUN Captain for the AUN Titans Polo team.


This was mine, the Prof's and Professor Charles first match ever.


At one point some goats and sheep and one dog were on the field. Only in Nigeria.


Notice the mountains in the back. Man, I need to get a new camera. Soon, it will happen.


I love Yola horses. Hmmm, maybe we'll go riding again this weekend!

photos of me


A photo from me at the club after the polo match. I look kinda frumpy I know....

karatu

The students have been busy-busy this week. Book reports due, short stories due for the children's literature workshop on Friday, country reports due on Friday as well, plus those good old Ms. Kate exams, one of which had a 100 questions this week.
Anyway, I wanted to post a little note about how you can help the students I work with or the Karatu foundation here in Yola as well. Karatu in Hausa means "learn" or "read." Both my middle and high school students have little to no books here to read. We need books. I have been printing off books from Project Gutenberg which I love and is great, but they are all so old. Please help! If you have any books that you wish to donate, books that you've read and will never use again that are appropriate, or see something cheap at a yard sale or garage sale or used bookstore, please please please donate it to us or to Karatu.
Karatu is a library that was started by Ms. Martha Speirs, the AUN Librarian. Karatu has set up small libraries in local village schools to get kids reading in Nigeria. There is no such thing as a library here other than at Universities. There are two ways to send them to us.

One. Mail them directly to me in Nigeria.

American University of Nigeria
care of Kate Hallet
Lamido Zubairu Way
Yola Township by-pass
PMB 2250, Yola
Adamawa State
Nigeria

Two. Mail them to Jasmine at our DC office and they will ship it to us.

American University of Nigeria, Washington Office
care of Kate Hallet
3201 New Mexico Avenue NW, Suite 258
Washington, D.C. 20016

Time to go eat lunch, print out that killer exam and teach more classes! By the way, these are amazing kids who love to read. It will be appreciated. We'll even send you a thank you card.

Love,

Kate

Sunday, October 11, 2009

goals?

Usually I am a goal driven person. I constantly have goals in my life that drive me forward. But I recently realized that currently I don't really have any goals at this moment. I could say things that wouldn't be true at all. My goals lately are extremely short term. Like getting through the semester as a good teacher. Or like yesterday doing all the things on my to do list like, market, polo game, cook food, go to belly dance class and quiz night. I am extremely surprised at this revelation because it is extremely unusual for me. Right now, I am not all that into school. I'm not even all that into having a family. Some other goals I could think of would be having a good next vacation, but come on, that's not really a goal, right? Heck, getting in shape isn't even a current goal of mine. However, I do plan on working out again starting tomorrow, but once again, I have no goal of working very hard at it or to look a certain way. Or maybe I'm still just disillusioned. Either way, it is what is I guess.
It's Sunday morning right now and the guys building a second floor on a shop next to my house are banging away, the church next door is going at it full force, and I am laying in bed typing away. It's been an okay weekend but extremely busy. Today isn't going to be much better but hopefully I will post some pictures later on.

Friday, October 9, 2009

TGIF, or maybe not?!?

So it's Friday. Usually I love Fridays, they typically mean the weekend is here or near. But not this Friday. It's another busy weekend and there's going to be lots of work in it.

Today, Friday, I am currently teaching five classes today. I had tenth grade Language Arts already, where we are currently reading "Treasure Island" and working on short stories that they will present at a conference next week. I am making them write a short story that is either related to Halloween, horror or has an element of mysticism in it. Then, I had seventh grade Language Arts where we discussed the same things but also went into details about the elements of a short story. After that I had the same seventh grader in World Cultures class where I gave an exam, but the fifty questions only took him fifteen minutes. So I luckily had a worksheet on Lake Baikal as a back up to keep him busy for another forty-five minutes.

Currently, I'm teaching eight and ninth grade Language Arts and they are journaling, so I decided why not blog now? We are listening to good old Miles and Rajes is trying to avoid writing and is continuously asking questions. Which is not too good of an idea considering their journals are to be handed in today. After this I have lunch and then African History with the tenth and Eleventh Graders.

So after my classes my hubby (the Prof) and I are off to a couple Polo Matches at the Yola Polo field and then off to pizza night at the club. After which we will likely head to the local bar next to our house with friends and chat at Fire Service for a while.

On Saturday, I have to drop the Prof off at his Saturday class, yep, you read that right. After that I pick up Taraba (one of our house helpers) and pick up my co-worker Rani and off to the market (kasuwa) we go. The new Modern Market in Jimeta just opened and I have not been yet. I need to get a few things to make Chicken curry for quiz night later that night, eggs for deviled eggs, again for later that night, pick up some goodies for the birthday bags for one of my adopted kids, Fadimatu's birthday for school and some fabric for some new clothes. After the market, it's off to another polo match. I just cannot get enough of local activities, I go to as many is possible for me to attend. Anyway after the match I have to run home and change, pick up Dr. Melba and head of to Carmencita aka Violetta's belly dancing class. After this I have to run home again pick up the curry and the eggs and head to quiz night!

Sunday Sunday. I plan on swimming and jacuzzing. I know it's not a word but whatever. I also have to read Treasue Island in order to write a quiz for Monday, take notes for a lecture on World History on the Hebrews, write an exam for African History, and work on more short story preparations. Also, I possibly have a party to go to in the evening. However, I am not quite sure that I was actually invited. I was invited by the husband of the party thrower and I was invited by and invitee, but I don't know if I/we were actually invited. So I may or may not be attending a Canadian Thanksgiving dinner.

However, it is a weekend and I do love weekends and going on outings and dressing up. So I think it will be good anyway. But I am a tad stressed about all that is packed into it and the lack of free time yet again!

Au revoir.

more pics of my house among other things


Yom Kippur Lamb dinner at our flat in Jimeta. Basil is in the green, Prof Charles in the gray and the Prof dancing around in the orange.


Our two youngest kitties, Lucky and Einstein. This was shortly after Lucky was in the fire.

Sukur Unesco World Heritage Site

Thursday, October 8, 2009

a little bit of this and a little bit of that


So my camera is crazy. It's not all that old but it sure does not want to take photos at night or in darker settings. errrrrr. this is of our house in Jimeta.


The Prof at the chess boards in Dupont Circle in Washington DC


The Prof at the Library of Congress in DC


Me and the Prof at the Library of Congress



Amin and Banji at Sukur UNESCO World Heritage Site
Near Maiduguri, Nigeria

delusional or disillusioned?


the waterfall


the waterfall from the village




again, the waterfall


the gang almost to the top.



Am I delusional or just disillusioned?




So I've been rather flaky all week. It could be the typhoid or this weird shot I had for the typhoid this week making me flaking and making me extremely forgetful or am I just out of touch with myself? Usually I have an amazing memory, so good to the point that it makes people freaked out. However, lately it is not there at all. So is my memory shut off or is it the fact that I'm under the weather. An example, tonight I was too call a friend in Alaska at six pm, first I lost her number and had to run back to my office to get it, then when it was time, just an hour later, I totally flaked! This was just after the day before when I wasn't thinking straight and had e-mailed her that I was going to call her at 9am her time tomorrow, which for her was tomorrow but for me, today. I didn't even realize what I was saying. It wasn't until she e-mailed me to ask what was up. Seriously, I'm a mess. I don't know what's up with me.

I'm even flaking on some of the things in my classes. It could also be that I'm teaching eight preps which is so outta control.

Good night, Mu kwana lafiya. Oh, make that nine preps, also teaching hausa class. ugghhh.

lightning strikes


Nigerian Independence Day Durbar


Did not get good pictures because my camera hates sunset, I know, seriously, come on! Also, the guys and their horses bowed down to Madame Kate and therefore I bowed to them and then did not get to take good pics!

This is a picture of Prof Charles and Victor, my student on their way up to the falls in Yadin, Adamawa, Nigeria.


Tonight there's a lot of lightning. I'm sitting in my bed listening to "the moth" podcast and watching the lightning which just might be the last of it of the year, which is sad. Here in Nigeria, in particular in Yola we have two seasons. One, the rainy stormy season which goes from late April to early October. Two, the dry hot harmattan season which goes from mid October till mid April. So we are approaching the dry hot harmattan season again, our first full one to be exact. We were here in Yola during most of the summer, which is unusual, but I loved the storms, although I was so bored, restless, and extremely stir crazy. Anyway, needless to say I will miss the storms, the rain, and the excitement and drama that tv and books just do not provide.

Life is okay right now, even though I have typhoid. School and I are finding a delicate balance which is nice. I'm starting belly dance classes that are taught by my friend. I'm going more for support than for the dancing, which I already know how to do, but don't really enjoy. This is going to be the beginning of my new workout regime that I am going to begin. My previous one got blown to bits after we didn't go on our UK trip and the biking along Hadrian's wall. So, I'm going to do it again so I can get into shape and prepare for whatever we happened to do in Egypt.

Egypt. I have never looked forward so much to a vacation before. Man, I cannot wait. Also, one for sure and possibly two girlfriends might visit in Spring, aka Januaryish. I cannot wait for this either. I miss having friends my age and who I have things in common with.

Been kinda addicted to Miles Davis and David 'Dave' Brubeck lately and am so sad that I am missing David Brubeck perform in Mpls, ugghhh... Anyway, I actually had my perfect Yola party a week after Sallah. Been having lots of dinner parties, lots of lamb, that I slaughtered myself, yeppers, been going to night clubs and dancing a lot and learning to know how to play new card games. Also got myself some new friends and some are above.

That's all for now.

nearing the falls

The Professor nearing the falls.

This title is very appropriate because this weekend the Prof was being pushed to the brink of what turned out to be a burn out. So this trip definitely helped him out, but I think Egypt, a trip to Abuja and Kano, some national parks in spring will be what he really needs!

If you look closely you can see how sweat stained his shirt is. It was at least 100 degrees Fahrenheit that day...

the waterfall

This last weekend the Professor and some friends went up to the waterfall not far from us in Yadin, Adamawa state. It's a difficult hike and not all made it to the top. I knew this and therefore did not go. I am not in shape for such an excursion. Here are some photos:
This last weekend the Professor and some friends went up to the waterfall not far from us in Yadin, Adamawa state. It's a difficult hike and not all made it to the top. I knew this and therefore did not go. I am not in shape for such an excursion. Here are some photos:


This is Labaran my assistant looking all western wearing Banji's sox hat, my marmot back pack and patagonia shirt.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Not my most typical fall

Sannu! I know it's been forever since I last blogged. I wasn't able to log in for over a month because I couldn't get into gmail and therefore, not accessible to blogger. Ughh! I thought I might have to start a new blog, but no, gmail finally began to work again.

I'm back in good old Nigeria and have started working again. I'm teaching secondary school at the American University Charter School. I am teaching 7-11 Language Arts, which includes: grammar, journaling, writing, literature, reading skills and more, also 7-11 social studies which breaks down like this: 7th grade World Cultures, 8/9th grade World History, 10/11 African History. Overall, I really love my job. I love teaching the kids and learning or re-learning things. I'm reading books I've never read before like Treasure Island. Can you believe it? Anyway, dealing with a new job, parents who are all professors, and working with my father-in-law as my boss have all but a bit challenging, but I am still here.

Currently, I'm going through round two of typhoid. It's not so pleasant. I don't know if it's worse this time or if it was worse in February. But typhoid is typhoid and again, I'm still here.

There are lots of new professors around now and they are a great new crew. It makes me really happy to be in Yola because I met them. I've been taking them on little trips here and there and it's forced me to go and see new places. We've now been to two new 'bush' bars called "Aisha" and the other "Silver." I prefer Aisha for two reasons, one it's way closer to the house and two, no AUN students!

I've been swimming more recently, but other than that tennis has been my only form of exercise. I've totally fallen of the exercise wagon and until this typhoid is gone can't really get back on. Which I am not totally happy about.

We are planning our Egypt trip for winter break. We'll be gone for about three and a half weeks! woohoo!

Anyway, I am in the middle of planning my big birthday bash which will be on Halloween. I'm going to have a live band, a dj, we're going to roast two lambs on the spit, there will be a fortune teller and two acrobats! Plus, it's a costume party!

More updates to come.