Tuesday, July 22, 2014

wet trousers

It was nearing the end of my first week at camp and I was no closer to being able to control my group of Italian youth. I was expected to be in charge of the group of older kids by myself with no assistant to help translate. I was becoming better at using non-verbal cues to try to explain directions for the projects and activities I had planned for our Asia themed week, but it was still frustrating. I found myself using my hands a lot more to try to get my point across and this made me feel even more like a true Italian. 

Thursday morning the director of the school introduced me to two new children informing me that they were from England, and only speak English (secret fist pump on my part.)  I get down to their level and tell them we are going to be new best friends. 

Emma and Luke's cute little British accents were incredibly endearing, but unfortunately Luke's affinity for destroying every tower another child built was not. 

The school is short staffed for sure. On this day, I'm left alone to manage 23 children outside in the garden for an hour. Many things ensued. Whilst trying unsuccessfully (in English) to settle a dispute between to very passionate, angry Italian children who are yelling so loudly and quickly in Italian, over presumably nothing, one of the other kids gets his foot stuck in a tree. Two others disappear into the bushes that line the property and I can't get them out. They think it's funny. Language barrier or not, I'm pretty sure me yelling, "GET OUT OF THERE NOW" in my scariest voice gets the point across. Fine, live in the bushes for all I care. 

Then one of four Lorenzo's approaches me with a worm that he's cut in half and either Francesco or Vincenzo is repeatedly saying "ho sete," which I've come to learn is "I'm thirsty." Of course they are, because it's only 95 degrees out! There is no one to go fill a pitcher of water though, unless I leave all 23 kids alone outside in the garden. They might be better off without me anyways I think! While I'm pondering this, I am hit in the face with a soccer ball. 

Just then, Luke approaches me with a waddle and a rather large dark spot on his shorts. "I've wet my trousers" he says in a perfect British accent. "No kidding" I say. "And" he says, as he pulls down his pants and underwear right there in the garden.."I think I've made a small poo." 

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