We're legit. Today B and I got our textbooks and began writing our curriculum for this semester (2 quarters- they're on the quarter system). No big deal, just saw the textbooks for the first time 3 days before beginning teaching, right? I can hear all US-trained educators holding back gasps, but this seems very normal here.... the school hasn't even completely finished the school schedule, much less classroom allocation, but today we learned that for the most part B and I will share a classroom. So glad to discover that there are textbooks for each of my four classes. For Freshman English, I'll be teaching lots out of the book plus Romeo & Juliet, Things Fall Apart, The Old Man and the Sea, and Great Expectations. I recognized several poems and short stories from things I studied in English (Cask of Amantillado, etc), so I'm feeling good. All four of my books (9th grade English, geography, speech, and theater) are really good, so I'm really feeling confident. Plus, you only have to stay far enough of your kids in lesson plans that they can't tell you're not completely planned for the entire semester, right?!?
Today we also went to the "nicest" grocery store, Caribbean. The school is helping us to furnish our little house, so we got house things like plates, silverware, mop, broom, trashcan, hangers, 2 fans, trash bags, paper towels, dish scrubber, a few skillets, pizza pan, cookie sheet. The Hersey's live in house helper is named Odonie, and she recommends a woman named Suzette to be our house helper when we're ready. Apparently she's worked for lots of other Americans, is trustworthy, and knows how to make cookies. Cookies? Sold! Not sure how much English she speaks, but we're leaning toward using her in the coming months. It's the strangest thing- the house help issue. Because we don't have modern things like Swiffers, washer/dryer, dishwasher, etc, and you can't even think about something like ironing except for the hours when EDH is working (public electricity - Electricity D'Haiti, works just a few hours a day, usually in the middle of the night), housework is veeery different. All the missionaries we know here strongly suggest hiring Haitians for several reasons- 1 to create employment, 2 to free up some of your time to do the things you came here to do instead of spending many hours a day mopping and washing all your laundry by hand. Honestly, it seems like it would be very awkward for me to "train" a grown adult to clean my house when I am able bodied. It would be awkward to acknowledge the realities of it- I am 24 and have a nicer house, education, job, etc than you, who works hard and long and supports a family. Just add that to the list of awkward moral quandries that come from mission work in 3rd world countries....
Also, I made HUGE progress in my learning of French today. I can now say the entire alphabet in French. I'm practically fluent! Most confusing: J is pronounced "zhee", but G is pronounced "zhay". Also, Y is pronounced like "eegreek". B and I bought "French for Dummies" at Half Price Books.