CURRENT LOCATION: Anchored in Ensenada Honda
18 18.318' N, 065 18.008' W
The sun rises on another day in Paradise. Our primary focus remains...keeping a diligent eye on the weather situation. Looking eastward, toward the source of tropical systems, I am happy to report that there is currently nothing for us to be concerned about. In their discussion threads, the weather experts are using terms like 'does not forecast significant development'
, '20 knot easterly shear'
, and 'lack of overall convergence'
to describe the tropical waves which are currently en route to our location from Africa. Terms which are music to our ears. It means we can relax and focus on that which makes living here in Culebra so wonderful.
For me, a new opportunity to love being here has just presented itself. As you have probably gathered from reading the blog, during our nearly 5 month stay in Culebra, Sheryl has done a superb job of integrating herself into the society of the island. She has been our emissary, from getting to know the postal workers who hold all of the mail we receive, marked 'General Delivery', to hunting down the guy with the LP truck whenever we need a refill on propane. When we are walking through the streets of town together, someone always recognizes Sheryl and says hello. Meanwhile, I have been content to spend most of my time on the boat or engaged in solitary pursuits (like kayaking around the harbor or hiking to the beach).
Soon, all of that will change. As a result of my efforts with students from Abbie's School over the last two weeks, I was presented an offer. For the fall semester of 2008, I will be the new Algebra teacher for Abbie's School. I suppose that makes it sound like much more than it really is. Let me put in into perspective for you. I will have 3 or 4 ninth grade students and will teach 4 classes each week (Mon - Thu). I am really
excited by the prospect. Tutoring is generally fun, but it usually involves fixing something which wasn't built correctly to begin with. As the teacher, I can be certain to construct a solid foundation which will support ever more challenging problem solving activities. I look forward to working with these kids on a regular basis to accomplish something meaningful.
School starts on August 18th. That gives me three weeks to think about and shape my teaching approach for these students. I suppose that I will also need to polish my basic algebra skills (it has been a little while since those muscles were flexed). In addition, I am really hoping that this will give me the incentive to learn and the opportunity to practice speaking Spanish. It is certainly now or never on the second language front.
I will probably have to invest a little time getting my classroom ready, as well. The school is actually a former residence, and I will be teaching in an open-air back porch. The space was recently extended through some summertime renovations and is not quite ready for prime time teaching. So, here are the 'before' pictures:
Returning to our more immediate future, today is Puerto Rico's Constitution Day, a celebration of the date when the islands became a commonwealth of the United States (July 25, 1952). Of course, this is only one in a long list of public holidays in the month of July. And, if the traffic in town and boats zipping through the harbor yesterday is any indication, this should be another busy time on the sleepy little island of Culebra.
Have a wonderful weekend, wherever you are!