Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Trickle, Trickle, Trickle

The ACPs have come and gone now. I controled eighth grade and tenth grade exams and I was harsh - and I liked it. I got boos and hisses when I walked into the room and it thrilled me. That means I am doing something right. They even tried to complain to their teacher about me and he backed me up. Suckers. They think they can get around my method of controling tests but I try to beat them at their own game. It´s gotten to the point where I write down their name if they are caught cheating so they can´t just throw away the copy I wrote that they cheated on and write out a new test. They are so sly though. They won´t write down their names until after they are done with the test and I haven´t caught them. Do you know how hard it is to try and pry a kid´s name out of him when he knows you are just going to give him a zero? When he waits for about fifteen seconds with a pen to his lips in deep thought and then writes, you are going to second-guess whether Espacio Vicente is his real name. So I had to keep an even closer eye on those young´ns and it just drains you. After an afternoon of watching to see if anyone had anything up their sleeve or were sitting on their notebooks, I was ready to pull out the old dentures and call er a night at seven o´clock.

It was a great weekend though, I must say. Nia and I went with our Zimbabwean friends to Chocas Mar, a beautiful beach north of Ilha de Mocambique for one of their birthdays. It was so much fun and so beautiful. After a stressful week of controling and grading in Monapo, it was great to kick back, play a rousing game of musical chairs and go swimming in the ocean. We swear we saw some big fish or dolphins jumping in the water. There is such a variety of seafood here and I never realized how much I like it until now. I love calamari and shrimp and depending on how it´s prepared, fish. There´s such an abundance here and you might as well eat it to get your protein for the day. And there was chocolate cake with pudding. I ate my weight in it, needless to say.

This week is the Mozambican Independence Day. Tomorrow to be exact. I doubt there are fireworks or barbeques but it promises to be interesting. It seems like on every national holiday there is always some group of people riding around on the back of a truck, singing loudly. It´s always interesting to see. I never was a big fourth of July person in the states but now that I don´t have it, I miss it. There won´t be corn on the cob or fireworks. Kind of sad but I´ll cope somehow. Maybe I´ll go gnaw on a piece of sugar cane or something. They always cancel everything when there is a holiday even somewhat close. For example, today we didn´t have school because there was a ceremony of some kind. Tomorrow we have no school and we aren´t banking much on thursday or friday either. You can pretty much call the whole week a bust in the work department. Oh well. You get used to it.

Something creepy happened to Nia and I when we were walking home from the market the other day. It was dark out except for the light of the moon and a streetlight. We were approaching the fence of our house and we could clearly see our own shadows on the fence as we were walking toward it. To the left, we suddenly could see the shadow of a child running quickly past us but when we turned to look, no one was there. Nia saw it too and there was no one around us. We freaked ourselves out a bit and then went into the house. While we were sitting at the table eating dinner, we heard a scratching at the door. We asked our embrigada about ghosts and she said that they exist and she wouldn´t be surprised because other neighborhoods around here have reports of them. And apparently we live really close to a cemetary. A student told me that when thieves in the jail die, they just bury them right behind the jail, which we live right next to. Creepy. The kid could be lying too. Who knows. I do know that I believe in ghosts though and it was an interesting encounter if you could call it that.

Nia and Timba still hate each other. My dog is the bain of her existence. I think they thrive off of each other´s negative energy. I guess that last night Nia couldn´t sleep because it was her night to take her larium medication. Well, it was about midnight and she heard a "trickle, trickle, trickle." She looked over at her bedroom door and saw a steady stream of urine seeping under it. My dog purposely urinates on her door at night, even though my door is closer and he has a large circumference with his leash length to reach a large portion of the kitchen. And he definitely smiles as he does it. I can´t help but laugh at it. He seems to enjoy taunting her and it´s pretty genius for a 6-month old dog. He´s not as stupid as he looks. I would call it a love-hate relationship between those two but it is definitely a hate-hate. I keep trying to reassure her that he will eventually improve. He doesn´t behave like that towards me. I think they need counseling. Where´s Dr. Phil when you need him?