Once a day becomes surreal, it difficult to remember what it felt like to get up that morning. But thinking back now, I vaguely remember that today started like any other day: I hit the snooze upwards of 6 times and, though I did put on a shirt that was hanging in my “closet,” I did double check to make sure the arm pits passed a shallow sniff test.
The rest of my morning was normal as well. I got to school with enough time to make copies in the library, except the copy machine is broken. My year 13s worked on the same Microsoft Word Problem-based document that I had them start yesterday, and during my prep I got the year 12s CAT practice done for this afternoon.
But then came interval, and over the usual tea and muffins, my pule calls to me from across the room. I try and keep a low profile during interval, and when I become the center of attention, I tense up. “No computer classes on Friday,” he calls to me across the room. I grow tenser. I often feel like the sole protector of the computer lab, and it hurts my soul when my ability to protect the computers is undermined.
“Why?” I ask hesitantly.
“We have visitors coming. And they need your room.” With 2 days warning and that much of an explanation, I decided to cut my losses. I nodded. But then, one of the Samoan teachers who speaks good English – hell, the best English of anybody on staff – asks me, “Are you excited?”
“Who’s Hillary?” I am used to being confused in conversation here, and in that moment, I’m not sure whether I anticipated her answer or if I was still totally baffled.
It turns out that Hillary, who is in London right now, will be in Samoa on Friday morning for 5 hours on her way to the ESOMAR conference taking place in Bei Jing this weekend. And this comes less than 9 months after Condalleeza Rice was here last July. There is a lot of construction going on at the National University, so our school has been chosen to host the Secretary… and my classroom is the only room with air conditioning on campus.
Preparations have already begun on The Great Hall, and as soon as classes are over tomorrow, the church is bringing in professional cleaners and extra furniture to make the room more hospitable.
I’m totally pumped and still a little dumbfounded. It’s just insane how quickly and nonchalantly a day news comes here. Out of left field. But now that it’s sunk in a little more, and even though she’s probably not going to come see my house, I’m wondering if I should take down my Obama ’08 placard. I’ll definitely take the boxers off the kitchen table. You know. Just in case.
I hope your day is packing a surreal punch too. Pictures below.
April showers. It's been raining for 3 days straight here. This is me wading home.
It's difficult to capture how windy it's been lately. Can you see the slant in the rain drops? Like I said... difficult to capture.
One of my kids borrowed my camera for a bit. I like how I am awkwardly framed into the left side of the picture. No cropping... that's how he took it.
2 years ago