Catherine is leaving today; I came down to Cotonou for the weekend to spend some time with her and say goodbye. She seems to be in a really good place, though, and ready to go. I'm happy for her! Soon she will be in the good ol' USofA, enjoying all of the amenities there, while I still have seven months of sweating and intestinal parasites ahead of me.
The kittens are fine; they are incessantly curious now and since they can walk more or less normally, are running all around the house and I always have to be careful not to step on them! The vet came last week to give Belle and Baby their annual rabies shots, and also gave the kittens some deworming stuff. He seemed to think they were perfectly healthy. Still can't tell the gender of the cats. I will be giving the kittens away in the first part of February, one to another volunteer and one to a fellow English teacher at my school. I didn't have many pictures of them from this week- the camera just doesn't capture how cute they are! Hopefully next time I'll have some pictures to post.
School went pretty well this week. Exams start a week form tomorrow, so I had to submit my exams this past week. I have finally figured out why one of my quatrieme classes seem to get the lessons better than my other one: the other one has English class after three hours of exhausting gym class baking in the African sun and heat. Gym class here is nothing like what we have in America: the kids are FILTHY afterwards because they literally roll around in the dirt, do tons of tumbling and gymnastics. It's amazing how athletic and strong they are. They get so dirty that they even have burrs in their hair when they are finished! And it's not like they can take a shower afterwards like you can in the US. The two hours of English are hard for me, too- the kids stink!
Now that it's the new year, it's time for me to start really working on Camp GLOW. We're about to book the venue, and soon we will start contacting guest speakers, chauffers, etc. I've just checked the Peace Corps' website, we've raised about $1400 out of $6000 so far, so please tell people you know to think about donating!
Once again, I can't believe how fast time is moving. Only one semester left of school, then Camp GLOW, then I'm done! I still don't know when I'll be coming home. Depending on if we get early leave dates or not, I could be home as early as late July, or as late as late September. I'm hoping for sometime in August- I would really like to make it home for the first football game! Plus, once all of my work is finished by early July, I'm gonna be bored out of my mind and chomping at the bit to go home. I won't know an exact date until the end of May.
This past week I was informed that I was selected to particiate in a breakfast at the ambassador's house with some government members, though I don't have too much information on that yet. Pretty cool, though!
I came down to Cotonou on Friday morning, and have just been hanging out with Catherine and relaxing. The first night we made homemade tomato soup and grilled cheese and watched some old movies. Unfortunately, yesterday I felt AWFUL the entire day- mild fever, aches, chills, and horrible stomach cramps, so I stayed in bed most of the day. Knock on wood, but I'm feeling mostly better this morning. We'll say goodbye to Catherine and leave Cotonou in a few hours. I'm hoping that I stay well this week, my kids need to have class this last week before final exams! I really want them to do well.