30 Final Days of Bangladesh – Day 23 – Goodbye LAMB school

So yesterday evening was the big day for LAMB school – the last day and the big onusthan (concert) for which everyone had been preparing for weeks.

The kids all know that Borodin – Christmas – begins with this onusthan but someone forgot to tell the staff at the hospital as they had a short Christmas service in the main waiting room. It’s a crazy time along with cake and dancing! Bangladeshis love to party.

While I fought with the internet, the Things were at school doing final rehearsals and, in the case of Thing I, shedding tears from the horrible inevitability of it all. We’re all emotional wrecks right now, I’ll admit, but Thing I is finding it hardest of all.

While I wait for photos to load for the blog, I got on with editing Wifey’s dissertation. Yes, it’s almost ready to send off bringing her Masters to an end. Clever girl that she is, she’s already been asked to lecture on the subject of her dissertation at the university in England. Wifey’s just a little nervous what happens if they fail the dissertation before she can lecture on it to new Occupational Therapists? What a conundrum!

The afternoon came and we went over to the field for the celebration. Between our old camera being especially lousy at night and Wifey’s phone being even worse, I’m afraid these photos are less than good quality but I hope you will bear with it and enjoy them anyway.

Here’s a few shots of what took place.

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Thing I’s class created their own version of the famous ‘12 Days of Christmas‘ making it personal to the school. Sure enough, I’m there being abused on day 4 which brought much amusement (apparently, I have a reputation for very loud and slightly high-pitched sneezing) and – for the benefit of the record – I will break my usual rule of anonymity for everyone except me and give you the lyrics of the song. Obviously you most of you won’t get the in-jokes but the kids at celebration certainly did and enjoyed the caricature plaques the boys held up each time. Chuti just means a holiday – Bangla and English are mixed constantly at LAMB. If you know the song then you appreciate how it builds up slowly and repeats adding one day at a time – so I was abused many times over:-/

On the twelfth day of Christmas LAMB school gave to me,

Jessica’s leaving party,

Ayon doing maths too fast,

Hridoy yelling loudly,

Bitto kicked a brick,

Mitu looking pretty,

Sweety smiling sweetly,

Lily sitting quietly,

Uncle Christian came back home!

Uncle Ken’s girly sneeze,

Uncle Milon’s large laugh,

Aunty Charlotte’s science class,

And a lovely Borodin chuti!

As a side-note and to appreciate what fun can be had with this song, check out Straight No Chaser’s version of the song. Brilliant.

With that over, certificates/reports were handed out and final photos taken of the whole school – the last time Thing I and Thing II will ever be gathered with all their school mates.

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I was sad not to have been asked to give the O level certificates to my final students from last year (yes, we have this crazy system where students go on to do their A levels at other schools long before they get their results and even longer before the certificates finally arrive!) so I was pleased to get a photo with a handful who were back at LAMB for their chuti. These aren’t kids any more – they are young men and women. Even after more than 20 years as a teacher, I still haven’t worked out quite how that happens.

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About D K Powell

British freelance journalist, author, writer, editor, musician, educational consultant. I lived with Wifey, Thing I (daughter) & Thing II (son) in Bangladesh for 5-6 years working for an NGO called LAMB. Wifey led the Hospital Rehab department and I used to teach O levels at the school before going full-time as a freelance writer in 2013. Now we're back in the UK learning how to be British again. When not writing or editing, I'm busy trying to complete a Masters degree in Intercultural relations in Asian Contexts and reading way too many books at once. I also drink tea - lots of it.
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