Saturday, March 2, 2013

Saturday Morning Excursion

I was up bright and early this morning and off to school. Yes, students come to school five and a half days each week here. I didn't know what to expect, as it was my first Saturday since school started.

I have only one class on Saturdays, my homeclass, grade 2 for maths and I thought the library would be the perfect place for the activity I had in mind. We sat around a large table and matched up ordinal numbers and words on cards, and there was a frenzy of activity as the kids caught on what to do.

Then they had to write the words in their maths text book. They took to this seemingly simple activity with such zest. It was loud and chaotic, but I hadn't seen them so engaged in a task, or as eager to complete it. Wow! I actually had tears in my eyes seeing them all work so hard!

The reward for the early finishers was to read one of the library books, and again the gusto with which they selected and read their books made me feel emotional as it was obvious that books are not ordinary household items for most.

After that, the principal's wife, Madam Pema, herself a teacher at the school, took us for an excursion to the local milk processing plant. Behind our house is a non-descript house without a sign our anything to identify it, but now we know this is the place to come for fresh milk, yoghurt and local cheese (a vast improvement on the uht and powdered milk we've had).

As we watched, a local lady came in with plastic jerry cans full of milk from her cows. It was measured and then we had our empty one litre water bottles filled. No milk cartons here!

Next, a big plastic bin full of fermented milk was stirred with a wooden paddle and measured out: yoghurt!  Unfortunately we couldn't buy any of the local cheese, sold in hand-full size balls, as you have to call and 'book' it in advance, but now we know the system and the place there will be nothing stopping us!

Next stop was the post office, rumoured to be just a kilometre up the road. It turns out we had walked past before but not noticed the faded sign hidden in the trees. We were on a mission to collect a parcel from Nana and Poppy for Xavier's birthday next week, and lo and behold, it had arrived!! Thanks Nana, it will make his day.

Walking back, we stopped to look in a 'General Shop' I hadn't been in before. It turns out the owner has travelled in Australia, New Zealand and Canada and they also have a restaurant so we enjoyed some momos and samosas for lunch and an interesting chat, stocked up on beer and I bought a new kira and blouse. Almost like a Saturday morning at Pacific Fair... almost!

Below are some photos, sorry I can't caption them...

Bhutan, Bumthang, Chumey, school, education, maths, volunteer teacher, Bhutan Canada Foundation, cheese, yoghurt, milk, kira, momos, samosa, post office

1 comment:

  1. I love that you are discovering the places in your town - especially the 'hidden' places that everyone else seem to know about. School sounds great too - how rewarding! x