The Danes have arrived!
For those who aren’t aware, I spent fall semester last year studying abroad in Copenhagen, and I completely fell head over heels in love with everything Danish (and not just the pastry!)
So it’s a little bit like fate that Dalun has so many connections to Denmark. 1) The center where I am staying was founded by Danes in the late 80’s. It used to be called the Ghanaian Danish Community Program, but has since been renamed the Simli Center. 2) The youth center here was also founded by Danes and is funded by a Danish rotary club. 3) One of the chief’s sons is married to a Danish woman. He lives in Denmark with her and their kids, and comes back to Dalun every once in a while to visit.
I’m sure there are more examples, but these are the most central ones I’ve heard.
Anyway…the Danes are here to plan and participate in the youth center’s annual sports festival and seminar. It starts next week, so I’ll write more about that once I know more about what exactly it is! I actually just met two Danes who are living in my section of the compound, Michelle and Natalie. They seem very nice and they’re staying for three weeks, so good-bye quiet (and a tad lonely) afternoons and nights!
Three other Danes visited Titagya today, and they brought a surprise…balloons!
I don’t know if the kids had ever seen balloons before, but they were a huge hit. It’s Friday, so class only lasts from 8-9 a.m., and the kids play outside until noon. The hype and excitement over the balloons lasted a good half hour, which in kid time is, like, three hours. The students even abandoned the precious soccer balls to play with balloons!
Due to the wind, most of the balloons ended up flying over the fence surrounding the school, so it would be a mad rush to see who could get to the balloons first. A lot of other women and children walking by thus stopped and watched the whole balloon commotion. I’m sure it was quite a sight!
It’s all dirt and rocks outside the school, so a lot of the balloons popped pretty quickly, but it was so funny to hear the shrieks of happiness every time a balloon popped. You’d think the students would have been scared, but no – they were delighted!
The teachers blew about half the bag – maybe about 10 balloons or so, so we’ll see when and if the balloons make an appearance again! It’s so amazing how much joy a simple balloon can bring to young children.