By Estefania Monsorno
I wake up everyday and I go to school (this sentence has been true for almost all my life, but this time it has a different meaning: I am no more a student).
I wake up every day and I go to school on foot. There are two kilometer and a half between where I live and the school where I do my voluntary service (I know it because I measured them thanks to the swatch that a Bolivian friend lent me). Anyway, I like walk in the morning, it puts me on the right mood. Moreover, early in the morning the air is fresher and there is less pollution (at least this is what I like to tell myself).
I wake up every day and I go to school, I was saying. I arrive before the first bell (the bell in the morning rings twice: the first bell means hurry up, the second one inform the Regente that it’s time to close the doors). I like stay in the Patio and look at the students while they get in, half asleep, some already bored, others happy to meet their friends, pulling their backpack, running to buy some break before that the teachers arrive. The littlest ones usually kiss their parents before run to their classrooms. They look so cute, staggering with backpack bigger than them… my favorite ones are the Kinder Garten’s children. Their classes start only at nine but they rush nonetheless. I love their enthusiasm.
In the school I help the teachers in the Kinder Garten, sometimes I give English lessons in the primary school and I am working on the school’s blog with the guys in the secondary school. At the beginning it had been hard: I observed all around with Europeans eyes and I couldn’t help comparing the school’s reality that I used to know to the new one that I found here (Well, I guess that I should have known that such thing was completely pointless, but I wasn’t doing it on porpoise. I did it, just like this). I remember that the first days the school was just a mess: too crowded, too small, too noisy. All the students looked to me exactly the same, wearing black, white and red (the school colors and the colors of the uniform), with black hair and dark eyes. It was impossible to tell the difference between one and the others. Then, in some moment it changed.
I wake up every day and I walk to school. I have been doing it day after day for months now. I look that row of students, so different one from the others, while they hurry to their classes. I climb up the stairs too, after that the second bell rings and the Regente closes the doors. I go in “my” class, the third year of the Kinder Garten, where the children who arrived before me great me with huge smiles on their young faces and with a loud «Buenos dias profesora Estefanìa (yes, they name me different here)». Every day those funny little men surrounded me with their games, their songs and their cries. They require all my energy and sometime when the last bell rings and they leave with their family I feel so tired that the two point five kilometers to go back home seems like two thousand instead. I know them by names now. I can tell who is the best in painting, who doesn’t like to draw and who still has problems using the scissors and they know me. They understand my spitalian (yes, I still speak Italian with a Spanish accent sometimes. #ilearnalone) and try to correct me when I say something completely senseless. As easy as it is, the school became my second house and the people there almost a second family.
Every day I wake up and I walk to school, over and over. Every day I wake up and I smile.