school’s out

25 Nov 2011


Professore Calista popped in today.

Actually Friday popped in at my tent where I was writing, to say Teacha is problem. No gasolina.

Calista is one of two teachers at Makanduzul’s little school. He paid someone to  take him to Mapai today (it’s Friday) but because of the muddy roads they had to turn back and attempt to detour along a bush track that passes through this area. Which is where they ran out of petrol. Calista walked eight kilometres to come and ask if he please couldn’t buy ten litres.

In this place of limited alternatives one tries to help, so I gave him a ride back with the ten litres. On the crooked little track we had time to chat, despite the language divide.

His posting to this remote school of poles and mud has been a frustrating one, Calista says.

The village has no water, no shop and no dependable transport, yet there are about two hundred kids in the community. But only 57 go to school. And those who do, only pitch up two or three times a week. Getting an education is clearly not a priority. It’s difficult for a teacher.

That also does not bode well for the wildlife of this region, I ponder on my way back, as I pass a herd of elephant. Because if you can’t make a living any other way there’s always poaching as a career..

Another day at the office. Seriously, this is what writers do: Think

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