Things have shifted into fourth gear on the island of Moloka'i. School starts here on Monday, July 30th. I cannot believe how this summer has flown by. This past week has been incredibly busy with a lot of emotions. Starting with last Sunday night, we had Aloha Sunday and Christmas in July for the summer team members and the church members. All of the summer team members were recognized and given plumeria leis and gifts from the church. After that we had our Christmas in July celebration. This included singing (or humming) Christmas songs and playing crazy Santa (sort of like a white elephant party where gifts are exchanged). With 64 people playing it lasted for a while, but it was a lot of fun.
Monday was pack up day where the entire team packed up and mailed out. That evening we went to the Manley's house for dinner and then up to the golf course to watch the sunset. It was so peaceful. We walked back to the Manley's for dessert. When I walked in the team started singing “happy birthday” to me. This totally caught me off guard. They made me feel so special with the cards and gifts. Thank you summer team!!!! By the end of the evening, I had shed quite a few tears and so had a few others. The next morning (July 24th), we got up about 5:30am to see the team off at the airport. It was very difficult to see the team leave, especially Jared. Lenny, Adele, Chris, Dan, Sarah, Jennifer, and I stood out in an empty field waving our aloha's to the team. As I saw the plane fly off I realized that I was out here by myself and I had to fully rely on God for comfort. It is a very strange feeling watching all of the people you have grown so close to fly away. As the day progressed it turned out to be a better day. God gave me the peace and comfort that I needed and I was able to concentrate on setting up my classroom.
Starting on Monday I will be teaching 5th grade- all subjects and 6th grade New World History. As many of you know, I graduated from Elon with a degree in Science education with a math concentration, so it is not exactly what I was trained for but God has given me lots of ideas and projects for this age group. I only have 5 fifth graders and I know 2/5ths of them! It has been so much fun setting up a classroom and getting everything in order for the year. If any of you have any ideas or lesson plans or materials that you would like to send, please feel free to. Anything is appreciated. The school I am teaching at is Molokai Christian Academy and it is funded through support from donations and contributions to the school. Basically it means that if there are no donations coming in the teachers do not get paid. Please keep this matter in your prayers. I know God will provide as He sees fit.
Life here on Molokai is so different than life on the mainland. Here are a few examples-
- The highest speed limit on the island is 45mph
- A traffic jam consists of two people in trucks pulled up beside each other talking story
- A small wedding is 2500 of your closest friends.
- A blizzard is someone dropping shave ice on the sidewalk
- A hailstorm is a strong wind blowing through coconut grove
Well that is about all on this side of the US! I would like to say a huge thank you for all of you that sent cards and notes for my birthday. They really brightened my day. Keep in touch and let me know what is going on in your corner of the world.