But ladies don’t drive cars ….

What a busy month it has been since we returned to Dhaka.  It feels like so much longer already, with the highs and lows we have faced.

One highlight was the evening our driver brought his son to work with him, and so he joined us for our journey home from the office.  Arnob is a very active 4 year old, full of energy and curiosity.  Once we had him strapped in the back of the car, we set off on our journey home.  Questions were coming left, right and centre – what’s that?  why?  etc etc.  We also had a bit of a discussion about the fact that we sound different to him (that will be because despite being 4, his Bangla is far better than ours!).  His Dad was trying to encourage him to behave by saying that if he was good in the car, then he would get a treat on the bus back home.  This got Arnob thinking about what he would like – pizza, burger, chips or a bike!  From this he decided that he wanted to buy a car, Louise said what a great idea, she would like to buy a new car too.  Arnob gave her a strange look and then babbled away in Bangla.  His Dad laughed (we were lost, not having understood him) – and translated for us.

“Arnob said that ladies don’t drive cars, so I think we should buy Louise some cooking pots”.

Out of the mouths of babes …..  The observations of a 4 year old in Bangladesh.  No stereotyping here then!  We just had to laugh!

It was the kind of tonic we needed, as we were three-quarters of the way through a very hectic week – the week of the delivery of the teacher training.  Fortunately we had prepared pretty well, to try and keep the stress levels down.  Although there were many frustrations along the way, the training itself went really well.  The teachers really enjoyed it, and said that they had learnt a lot of things they didn’t know.  These weeks are what Louise’s work is all about – and very rewarding, but it was a very exhausting week as we are sure you can imagine.  Although Louise had a translator for the technical side of things, there was a lot of time she was alone with the teachers, so leading the training in Bangla.  Fortunately the teachers continue to be very gracious with her mistakes, and help her learn new words and the correct way to say things.  All in all a successful week, but we will share more about that in our next letters.