I was looking forward to starting work at the school, but also perhaps a little apprehensive. We have been at the school for a full week now and have started to get to know some of the children. It is great to see how all different volunteers interact with the children and the amount of fun many of the children seem to have with us. On Tuesday we drove up into the mountains on the school bus and played football and other games. It is always fun with the children but also challenging and hard work especially on the trip to the zoo when there was the added risk of the children being bitten by one of the Ostrich’s! Sometimes it feels like we are just keeping the children occupied for the morning and it would maybe help if we gave them more structure to the activities we do with the children. However, saying this we have been on a trip into the mountains, to the zoo, as well as the usual activities of playing football, basketball and making art with the children. It is always challenging with the children as they all have different interests, concentration levels and abilities in various activities. Some always like to play sports, whilst others like to play catch or just want a piggy back … at times they are competing for your attention and it is a great help to the teachers having so many active volunteers for the summer school. The summer school must also be giving the parents of the children a welcome break and of course giving the children attention, fun and broadening their experience.
The second weekend in Tirana was great. Two of the volunteers visited Kosovo and seem to have enjoyed an interesting trip, another went to Skopje, Macedonia to visit friends. I was planning to go to Kosovo, but instead after the party at some of the long terms volunteers on Friday night, didn’t feel like getting a bus at 6am! I had an interesting weekend in Tirana … Our mentor Holta, took some of us to a bar near the train station, quite some way from the trendy Block area of the city. The bar itself was about 5 minutes walk from the main road down an unlit track alongside the railways and in what I think was a disused warehouse. Anyway, as a result of this night I am now one of the few British people in the world who can say they have watched a documentary on Jamaican culture and reggae music in a bar in Albania.
PS. It turns out Fatjon is a common Albanian name. Also the name of one of the cats Lauren has adopted