On Friday, November 23, I went out on an extracurricular “promenade” with some of my students, around Poti. The occasion was a national holiday. The morning sky was deep blue and a soft breeze was carrying a bitter chill, along with bright yellow and red autumn leaves, scurrying frivolously in the air before graciously landing on the asphalt.
The walk from my house was short and entertaining. My 12 year-old host brother, Giorgi, was of the party. The kids were really happy: it was my first excursion with them. As much as I was trying to engage each of them individually in English, I couldn’t quite communicate as well as with Giorgi. That’s when I realized the quick impact I was making upon Giorgi’s English skills. In fact he knew so much more English than his peers, that at one point, he said: “”wow, so now I am the interpreter!” and everyone burst out laughing!
We first arrived at the Poti church, a beautiful building, just breathtaking. We stayed there for about an hour. There were a lot of other school children, as well as parents. We lit candles, and paid our respects. Everyone was staring at me! But I am used to that by now.
Next, we went to a restaurant. The kids were so organized when it came to getting the tab! They had a brief discussion, then went on to order the food, we ate, and they made it clear that I was their guest, and therefore I should not even think about paying for anything.
After eating, we just strolled down the streets of Poti. Poti is a small, pretty city. It has everything a big city would need, only in smaller size, which creates a feeling of coziness, and comfort, and happiness.
We arrived at the park, and we took a look at the ongoing preparations for a circus show that was scheduled to take place in the afternoon.
There was a bear, yes, a bear, chained to a tree, and Giorgi and me were playing with it! It was a very, very well-domesticated bear, and its owner was standing right next to it, of course. At one point, it grabbed Giorgi’s arm, and then it came running after me so fast I didn’t have time to react.
Thankfully, when It made contact with my feet, instead of being knocked over and…eaten alive… I just felt the big furriness all over my feet, and the bear was just cuddling to my feet! it just wanted a big petting!!
I will definitely hold more excusions like these. I feel so proud to be a role model for my pupils. This in itself, is the ultimate reward for what we do here!!
PS: If you guys want the video of the “bear attack”, let me know!!!