Deniall



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Activities week(Back)

Another month almost gone! It's crazy how fast time flies around, especially when you're super busy. I'll try and remember everything interesting that happened!

The main activity this month was last week's activity week. All of the high school grades spend a week in a different part of Ethiopia, mostly engaging in some kind of community service activity, getting the students used to serving the needs of the community with their time, hopefully encouraging them to look into some other voluntary opportunities once they leave Bingham. As the Grade 11 Bible teacher, I was leading the Grade 11 trip to Awassa. Awassa is about 5 hours drive from Addis, situated beside a lake. We were staying at the Norwegian Lutheran Mission guest compound which is situated overlooking the lake, a really beautiful location. In total, 17 students and 4 staff headed down there.

The grade 11 trip is slightly different from other trips in that the service section of the trip is toned down, and the students look at some guidelines for relationships. I think most of them before we left had in their heads the idea of awkward sex talks with their teachers so were really not looking forward to it. It was really nice to see themsurprise themselves and enjoy what was being discussed! The videos we were watching were focusing on becoming the right person, rather than finding the right person, how the guys need to respect the girls in their attitudes, and challenging the girls with their responsibility (clothing etc) in this. It was interesting, some of the girls hadn't really considered this!

It was a great week getting to know the students, spending time with them outside of being their teacher. One of the evenings, we got the students to cook, and then judged their creations Masterchef style! We divided them into 4 groups and had each group cook a starter, main and dessert which we then sampled as our meal. One of the other staff members was gearing up to order pizza beforehand, betting that the students wouldn't cook anything edible. However, they really surprised us, and made some absolutely amazing food! one of the students practiced his dessert at home 4 times before coming! We finished the evening absolutely stuffed, no need for pizza!!

 One of the groups main dish..

 ..and creme caramel dessert. My camera phone did not do a good job taking photos. I'll try and get some better ones up!

 Visiting the nearby Helimission compound. They fly missionaries out into very remote, unreached areas of the country.

 This kid had a pet bee. He had tied a string around the bee's head and was watching it buzz around him in circles as he held the string. Kind of like a living kite.

 Service at a local orphanage

 Swimming at the pool!

 Sunset

Other than that we had a great, relaxing week. We also discussed some of the difficulties and frustrations that I've been having with teaching them in Bible class. It seems apparent that there are not very many Christians in the class, and so they haven't really had much interest in Hebrews with me; it doesn't mean as much as I'd thought to them. I discussed with some of the staff on the trip with me how they seemed so much more free to engage in discussion about the topics on the trip than they ever are in class, and we figured that is because of the material, it's just not where they're at spiritually. We decided that we can maybe try something new when the term starts again, something a little more basic and discussion provoking. Please pray for me as I work out what this looks like with the help of some of the teachers here.

Last Sunday, I had a good friend, Nathan Hunsdale, visit Addis. He was on his way back from South Africa, and had a 12 hour layover in Addis, so I picked him up at the airport and we pack a ton of stuff into one day. A few friends were at the SIM retreat centre so after church, we drove down there. We had injera for lunch, and went swimming in the lake in the afternoon. There is a go-karting place in that town so we headed there to check it out. When we arrived initially, it looked like the karts were very slow, but it soon became evident that it was only extra cautious drivers. We had 6 laps for about £1. Really good fun!
After that, I left him back to the airport. I hear Ethiopian Airlines are now doing cheap flights from Dublin, so there's no excuse for more of you guys not to come and visit! Ask Nathan, I think he would be happy to recommend visit here.

 Go-karting in Ethiopia!!

This week is a break from school which has been nice, I'm gonna take a few days with Yohannes and Cara down in Langano to chill out, it's difficult to get away from work completely in Addis!!
It has been good to watch some of the rugby, enjoyed seeing England knocked out early! Gutted Ireland could only do one round better though :-)

Must run,
Niall

Posted at 21 October, 2015, 12:23pm


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