A sad last day at the school

We went to the school as normal today, apart from the fact it was our last day. I helped paint a second layer of yellow paint on the slide in the play area. Then at about 10am me, Vanessa, a guy and his helper, and Bryan drew some pictures. Vanessa drew one either for me or of me, the language barrier preventing me from fully understanding it. I helped Bryan with the English names of people as he was drawing a picture of everyone. Our male teacher’s name was written down as meat, as that was Bryan’s nickname for him. When we showed everyone we realised we had missed three of the guys out.

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Bryan.

Bryan is such a bright kid and has learnt so much English whilst we have been at the school. He isn’t even disabled like the other kids, he is just there to help out. Just before lunch I did a tiny bit of sanding on the windows of the kitchen. Then we ate packed lunch at the school, which Gaby had brought when she came to see what we had done, and went to the Condado shopping mall. We got a friend a birthday card in the Hallmark shop. Then we went to Porta to phone home, but there was a time delay so we kept talking over one another and the connection was bad. Eventually the phone cut me off mid-sentence, so I went into the phone booth with my other friends to wish our friend happy birthday. I asked what he planned to do, to which he replied ‘get drunk’.

Generic Hallmark shop. Image not my own.

Then as we were walking out of the centre Gaby’s dad ran up behind us and led us off to a really nice ice cream place. Here we learned that Gaby was going to buy us ice creams, well at least all the people she had managed to round up. The ice cream was served in a wafer bowl. I had one chocolate scoop and one flocos (chocolate chip) scoop. We all then had strawberries on top, mora (blackberry) sauce and chocolate shavings. It tasted amazing, but I couldn’t eat the wafer bowl at the end as I was so full.

Ice cream wafer basket. Image not my own.

Then we went back to the school for our final few hours. I had Kati sit on my lap and clap my hands together for most of the time and Diana was also talking to me. I helped paint some of the metal parts of chairs and met some of the teachers who turned up. I gave a tour to a student of all the things we had done.

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Bryan and others playing with the balls and pool we gave them.

We then started our goodbyes. We got the ball pool out and put up the signs that Miguel’s friend had made for the different areas. Then we played with the children and took photos. We were all presented with certificates by the school and thanked for the work we had done. I gave Bryan a long hug good bye and Diana.

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Children playing on the newly painting play area.

Then we left the school and a couple of people were close to tears. We went to the hostel and got ready to go to the Mexican for our evening farewell meal. After the meal a few of us went back to the hostel. One of the guys proceeded to go to bed and lock the other guy out and we couldn’t rouse him. We had to get a spare key and even then he hadn’t woken up. Then the others got back, and most of the guys were very drunk as they’d been to a bar. One just kept throwing up, and another went to the loo and kept falling asleep in there. One of the more sober guys looked over the door they asked ‘are you ready to come out?’, and said ‘you keep going to sleep’. To which he replied ‘yes’ and ‘how do you know’. At this point sober guy said ‘I can see you’, and the drunk guy looked up and let out a squeal. Eventually we called our male teacher. When he asked ‘are you ready to come out?’ the reply this time was a childish ‘noooooooo’. The ensuing mess of everyone trying to go to sleep, and helping to clean up sick, led to one of the guys having to sleep in our room. As our female teacher said in the morning ‘he was helpful last night, so he can stay wherever he likes’.

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