Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Penang bits

Ran into a lady I know from the choir, at the supermarket. I asked if she was coming to sing the next day.  "No," she said. "I have to train my new maid."  I look at the girl and smile.  No smile back. "From Cambodia?" I ask.  "No, Indonesia.The last one I had ran away after two days,"  she tells me. "The agency says this one won't run because she is from a remote area." I suggest she could bring her along, she might like to come and hear the singing, see what a good person she (singer lady) is to sing in the old folks home.  I smile again at the maid.  No response from either of them.  Sigh.

Held our sixth Talk Time (ESL class) at the Indonesian consulate last week. The biggest group yet--28 I think.  There were 40 women at the shelter--not sure why all didn't attend. We have five lesson plans now and have started to repeat them.  The topics are:  food, with pretend market and shopping lists; body, with giant bandaids and doctor badges, and of course "head, shoulders knees and toes; adjectives (mostly emotions), with an adapted version of If you're happy and you know it clap your hands; colors and numbers; and directions, with toy cars and maps, and blindfolded mazes around chairs.  Well, they are fun for the ladies even if they don't actually retain any of the simple language we try to impart.

Saw, too close, a dead motorcyclist on the main road in front of our condo.  A haunting image.  It looked like he had been trying to pass in the oncoming lane, at speed.  A very common practice unfortunately.  There is little or no traffic control/enforcement, and motorcyclists have the right of way anyhow, in whatever lane/direction they are going.

Alternating the sad and the upbeat here...

Received the greeting of "Good morning Madam" from the man in the guardhouse--pretty much each day as I leave.  Tom gets lots of "sirs" at work.  Perhaps we will miss this next year?

No eyebrow raised for the commuter backhoes and forklifts sharing the shoulder-less roads with us on a regular basis.

Sailed by: "Ovation of the Seas"--a 5,000 (!) passenger cruise ship!  It was quite far off shore but easy to spot from our balcony.   Looks like a tall, overloaded container ship.