My first outing to visit a school under Smyrna!
We started around 9.30 a.m and after quite a bumpy ride arrived at Smyrna Church/School in Ragala at about 10.10 a.m.
We were warmly greeted at the gate by Sister Sujatha who took us to her home and a few minutes later to see their pre-school. Tiny tots in red checked shirts were all over the place and all sang out in unison, "Good morning, aunty!". They looked me up and down trying to figure out who I was. I stood in the middle like an alien(a happy one) while every one had a good look at me. It was the first time I was surrounded by so many kids at once and what a pleasant surprise it was!
They were very sweet and they sang a song for us-it was a very special treat for not many would go to the extent of singing for me :) The song went something like:
My little dolly has gotten angry with me
and thrown all the coconut shells I play with, into the fire
So much school work I must to and my hand aches
from having to write so much
and on top of that I have to do my maths
mummy is not happy no matter how much I do
she always says, "It's not enough" and I don't know what to do
"Please mummy remember I am just a small kid,
tell me only things that I can do,
and when I grow up I will try to do all that you want me to do,
but for now please let me be me.
What an appropriate song, eh?
Next we were taken down stairs where we were once again welcomed by the teachers of the social work school. We sat in the front row in the chairs that were assigned to us. Little girls and boys were ready in their blue uniforms to sing carols.
After the lighting of the traditional oil lamp (candles, in this case) we sat down to watch the carols. It was very encouraging to see these kids singing in all three languages(there were about 15 kids) and I was more amazed to find out that only 3-4 of them actually could read and write properly. Majority had memorized the songs just by listening to them.
While they sang, Mary and Joseph walked in with their new born doll. The 3 wise men would go down in history for being so young! Gabriel was a bit too shy and Joseph had a bit of a hard time figuring out which side of Mary should he stand and keeping his staff(stick) away from poking someone in the eye.
Overall it was beautiful and it was so nice to see all of them taking part. I had to give a speech which was a bit nerve racking but I managed without major catastrophe.
We sang silent night and finished the programme with cake, patties, banana and a hot cup of tea which was very much welcomed by everyone :)