One of the extra-curricular events we have at school is a regular ‘tea afternoon’ when interesting guests are invited to give a little or talk or presentation after school on a topic of general interest. The students (from 9.b and 11.f on this occasion) create a ‘tea house’ in one of the classrooms and people come to listen to the speaker and have a nice cup of tea. It’s great. Recent speakers have included the Hungarian TV reporter Al Ghaoui Hesna talking about her reporting from the Middle East, and two of our own teachers, Dóra Tarnai and Keith Lambert who were involved in Fulbright exchanges between our school in Hungary and one in Connecticut. I guess it’s getting harder to find interesting guests, because the most recent tea afternoon featured me talking about my trip to Brazil in the summer.
It was a great trip down memory lane for me, remembering the fun times I had in Porto Alegre, São Paulo and Recife earlier in the year. I talked about the cities, the climate, the delicious food and drink, the customs, the lifestyle, the language – and whatever else popped into my head. Showing some of the photographs taken by me (and also some taken by my colleague Nina Lauder) really brought back the memories.
Before the talk I made a little video message and sent it to some of the people I know in Brazil, asking them to teach us a few words in Brazilian Portuguese. Many thanks to Kelly Françoso, a teacher I met in Oxford in the summer, who sent me a video message containing a mini-language lesson – it was great to be able to show it during the talk. (I can really recommend the mailvu.com site for those thinking about sending video messages. I also used it last year, when I asked students to send me their video applications for a job as a polar bear lookout – long story.)
All in all, it was a fun afternoon. For the students it was a good chance to practise their English (I was too lazy to do it in Hungarian) and to hear a bit about this fantastic country and its people. As for me, it was a reminder of the great times I had, and the wonderful people I was lucky enough to meet.
My youngest daughter was there to listen, too 🙂