Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Tuesday, 22nd October 2013

Like most mornings we've now experienced in Sierra Leone, we woke up to car horns and the hustle and bustle of street life outside our windows. After experimenting with various ways of showering, we were all downstairs ready and waiting for our breakfast. Every day in Sierra Leone brings new opportunities for us all to experience and today was certainly not lacking in them. At 7:45 Lizzie, Angharad, myself and Mr Meally were off to the TV studios to be interviewed and perform on the local early morning television programme. After listening to a variety of stories we were summoned to perform (which included some improvisatory flute beat-boxing from Lizzie!!) We endured brilliantly with the heat and after coping with a camera filled studio we set off to back to Ballanta to continue teaching. The whole experience felt completely surreal.

Following our wraps at lunchtime and meeting up back up with the JT Reffell gang, we decided a trip to the supermarket would be most suitable, so we could all stock up on some supplies (*cough*paprika Pringles,* cough* Malteaser ice cream ;). After a bumpy, rainy bus drive up a mountain road (no exaggeration!) we arrived, had a good shop and after coping relatively well with our new foreign currency then we ate heartily J

The evening which followed was definitely one which I will remember forever! Clambering back onto the crazy bus with our trusty tour guide Lamin we were heading to the "Cultural Village". None of us knew exactly what we were about to experience but from what we heard from previous years we knew we were set up for a treat! Driving through the gates into the community, we were greeted with a gaggle of girls and boys running, smiling and shouting to us. When we got off the bus, we were escorted by a group of children clinging onto us, guiding the team to some seats which were set up in an outside stage. We sat in anticipation of what was to come, then suddenly the drums started and the show began...

The drummers and the children performed beautifully! Everyone was so impressed! They danced perfectly in time and executed many gymnastic tricks brilliantly! We were all particularly wowed by the young boys (4 years old) backflipping and standing on their heads!

Following the performance, we were invited to sing to them! And after a rough rendition of And so it Goes sung by Darcey, Kirsty, Alex and myself, they all wanted to talk to us and invited us to buy little gifts to take home which are all handmade in the community. The atmosphere was inspiring and we all took away more than a few brackets that evening!

Later, arriving back at the "Comfort Zone" and having reminisced and shared our stories and experiences- We settled down to a yummy plate of Pesto pasta and a can of coca cola with the soundtrack of pouring rain and thunder.

Although today has been one of the most incredible days of the trip so far, I would not be surprised if tomorrow is even better, because after all, we are in Sierra Leone and anything is possible here.

Night night!