We ended up having a fourth of July celebration, even out here. First we had a slideshow of photographs to show the kids about life in America. We talked about the founding of the country, Independence from Britain (which the kids can definitely relate to, have just achieved this milestone in Tanzania in 1961) and about the history of other colonizers. We talked about where people in America come from, using President Barack Obama as an example of how people in America come from everywhere but are all Americans. Then we showed photos of fireworks, played our national anthem, and halfway through Buddy terrified all the little ones by setting off loud poppers outside of the classroom. The ones closest to the sound scattered like mice from a cat. They were so scared! We were just laughing and laughing, and feeling happy that we could celebrate our wonderful country from so far away.
Although the early part of the day felt distinctly frustrating, it ended with such a feeling of carefree happiness, that I find myself intensely grateful for the companionship of my fellow Americans, and for the opportunity to apply my distinctly American skills to hopefully make a difference for APW and for the people in this community.