Mrs Welsh’s visit to Tamil Nadu, India
Friday 28 January 2011
I am in Doha (Quatar). It is 19:08 Doha time. We are waiting for our next flight to Chennai. So very excited. So far the journey has been brilliant. Not too tired yet even though I’ve been up since 4am. It is 21.54 and I’m in India!
Sunday 30th January 2011
Hello, I am now well and truly in India. I landed safe and sound and then I had a long journey to our stop off point. We stayed there a night and I was able to get washed, fed and changed. I am now on my way to the school. It is a long journey about 7 hours, but it will be well worth it.
I am unable to upload any photos at this point, but keep looking to see if I can. I cannot explain in words what it is like here – but I will try.
Everywhere is busy and colourful, people beep their car horns all of the time and everyone is friendly. People have been coming up to us in the street to have their photo taken with us. It is a totally new experience.
I can’t wait to tell you all about when I get back. I am looking forward to teaching tomorrow. I finally get to see all the children then.
If you look at the map below I am in Tamil Nadu and I have stayed in Mamallapurum, above Pondicherry and the school is in Tiruvannmamlipuru (I think that is how you spell it).
Monday 31 January 2011
I am in my Sari and I am feeling quite cool in it. It is 11:55 here so 6:25 at home. I have discovered that if I turn my watch upside down it’s India time and then I can still see British time. Try it then you will know what time it is for me here.
Monday 31st January 2011
We are here safe and sound and we had the best welcome. All the children stood in line and clapped as we came into the school. We were then given a garland to hang around our neck and the teachers put bindis on our heads. We were then able to meet all the children and talk to them and see their work. It was amazing to see the work that the children can do.
The children also walked in front of us and laid petals out on the floor, for us to walk on. It was a really great welcome – I am wondering if I will get that from 6EW when I return????
Well I will see you all soon and I will try to get some pictures on the website too.
Tuesday 1 February 2011
Hello, well had a good day teaching. Managed to get our letters to the children although they could read the letters they struggled to understand some of the words, like smartboard and x boxes! The children can all now say Malvern and they know our school is in Liverpool. Not sure if they know where Liverpool is though.
Off to a village soon to see where some of the children live and to see their hospital.
Wednesday 2 February 2011
I have visited the town of Trivanommali today to buy Blutack and sellotape so that I can dress the classrooms and make them look nice. It was hectic in the town and I didn’t get what I needed so I am now trying to hold up rolled up posters with string. I have been really busy and am in need of a shower, a real shower- not a bucket of water and a jug!
I have arranged to have a party with all the children on Friday. I am off to see the childrens home later.
Looking forward to seeing you all next week.
Wednesday 2nd February 2011
The internet is working again so I can tell you all about my day. It started off as usual with our early morning wake up call, bells ringing and the local family’s daughter shouting at us to get up! Once up we take it in turns to get washed and dressed and then we wait for breakfast. Before breakfast we watch the children have their roll call, which is a lot like our assembly. Although the children here are a lot quieter (chuckle). After assembly the children march their way back to class and then we have our breakfast.
We decided today that we would go into the local town, as mentioned earlier, I needed some teacher supplies (blue tac and sellotape) as I wanted to decorate the classrooms here so they look a bit more like our classrooms. Here they are completely bare they don’t have the posters and pictures that we have. They don’t even have Golden Time!!! The town that we went to was soooooo busy. I have never ever been anywhere as busy, if you think it is busy in Liverpool One at Christmas, then you should have been here! Even crossing the road was quite an ordeal, it was a matter of running as fast as you could to the other side. RULE ONE – don’t stop (or look) until you get to the other side. RULE TWO – if you stop you will get hit by a car, bike, ricksaw, person, tuck tuck, bus, van, or even a cow!
After a rather unsuccessful shop we decided to head home. There is a lot more to the story but I will save that for when I get back. Although I did do all the walking in the hustle and bustle with no shoes on!
By the time we got back to school we had lunch and then we started to sort out the classroom. Unfortunately nothing would stick to the walls, it was very funny, but a bit frustrating too. (Update – we are still at a loss as to how these posters will stay on the walls).
We then all got into a school bus and headed out to see the villages where the school children live. What another amazing experience. All of the children came out to see us, we were like the Pied Piper walking down the street with hundreds of people following us.
We have just had dinner and so it is time to go to bed soon, as there is no evening entertainment, no TV, no Sky – NOTHING!!!!! I’m sure some of you find that hard to believe, but really NOTHING!! I am managing to read a lot, so 6EW remember if I can read this week, so can you!!
In school all day tomorrow, got some exciting games planned with the younger children, been in the Year 5 & 6 classes mostly, but I will brave the smaller ones tomorrow.
Whoever said that I wouldn’t eat a lot must have been telling fibs, as the food is cooked for us by the village elder’s mother, and it is lovely. It’s different everyday, it’s spicy everyday – even breakfast is spicy, but very nice. Although I am looking forward to a nice roast dinner when I get home on Sunday.
Friday 4 February 2011
The last day has arrived and we have a power cut (this message is being sent by text on my phone)
The children have just given us a 2 hour show and now we are feeding them a feast. Their palm leaves (plates) are empty. It’s such a lovely moment! We will eat with them too and then it’s back to class for afternoon lessons and to give out the presents we have for them all.
We are leaving the village at 6pm which is 12.30pm at home. Then we have a 6 hour drive to the airport and fly at 4.30am (11pm at home) So I have a very long day ahead. I have a lot to tell you all when I get back, see you on Monday morning.