14th October 2013
Although today is a bank holiday the children were asked to come in to school to say goodbye to me. I was amazed that virtually all the children were there. They sat on the new benches that have been made as a result of recent donations and listened as the director gave a speech about my coming and what its meant to the school.
He then asked them to sing and for each student who felt so moved to say something about how they had experienced my visit.
The singing raised the energy in the room to such an extent that I was moved to tears. And even more so as both senior and junior students stood and spoke of the difference my being here has made to them personally and to the school generally.
When it came to my turn to make a response I heard myself saying that I had come here to find my family, and having done so and being so warmly welcomed that I would be coming back every year to see how they’re getting on.
Where did that come from! I hadn’t even thought it before it came out of my mouth!! So now I’m committed to coming back every year. It’s probably not such a bad idea as I’ve realised that there’s much I can do here to help with capacity building both on an individual and community level.
Many of the students came to hug me before they left, and to wish me God’s guidance on my way home and again when I come to visit next time.
One offered me a gift of food. A cornmeal dish cooked in banana leaf. As I tasted it I realised that it is the same as something we have in Jamaica.
‘Duckuno!’ I exclaimed, ‘We have this in Jamaica.’
A little crowd gathered as I munched through what they call……. and marvelled at how well preserved the cooking process had been maintained over hundreds of years.
Yes, I’ll be back next year; and probably for some years to come. It would be good to see the Form 1 become Form 6.