Saturday, June 03, 2006

Organized Chaos

The story of two Americans who tried to organize "A Language Festival"

A few weeks back Erin, myslef, and a French teacher organized a language event. An opportunity for students to practice, demonstrate their ability by giving, speeches, poems, theater, dance in Portuguese, English, and French. The day of the event Erin and I arrived early with hand written schedules, post it notes, seating charts, and eager smiles. But as we should have known, Type A personalities are in direct opposition ot the Mozambiquan way of life. So we sat with your color coated supplies for 2 hours, and with 5 minutes until show time, Niguem, Nada, Nobody, was there- were talking neither participants or audience. All we could do was sit, wait, and make passing jokes about the huge cultural elephant. But in typical Mozambiquan fashion 1 hour late for us, or on time for them, everyone arived and we began. The auditorium was bem cheia (packed), and although the purpose of the event was lost due to the lack of a micropohone and an amazing sound system that insisted on blasting 50 cent during the intervals of the acts, ther was a positive energy and a feeling of pride that radiated from our students. I felt like a god damn parent, moving about, congradualting my students with high fives and hugs, I was even moved to tears as one of my favorited students belted out, in almost perfect English, Martin Luther King's "I Have A Dream" speech. The event lasted for 3 hours, and following the last act we had a huge dance party that lasted well into the evening... so i give myself a pat on the bag, and will gear up for Language festival #2 next trimerster.


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