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JOURNALS OF KAREN McCANN


Karen in New Guinea

SHORT TERM TEACHER, LUTHERAN MISSION NEW GUINEA

1961-1963

Foreword
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter VI
Chapter VII
Chapter VIII


CHAPTER V

MY FIRST DAYS OF TEACHING AT KLS

Editor's (Karen's) preface, December 27, 2005: One of my sharp-eyed former KLS students, Marilyn “Maggie” Tuff, noticed that I have often changed tenses in the body of the text. This, therefore, leads me to add this explanation. I have transcribed my diaries and letters verbatim, and that is what you will see here for the most part. I was writing in my diary each night after the day's events; consequently, some of the text may be in the past tense (as, Today we hiked up the mountain), and in the very same entry, I may switch to present tense (as, Rita is not cooking tomorrow). When I include editorial notes and memoir stories, I use brackets and date the passage with a 2005 (soon to be 2006) date. I hope this will not cause too much confusion. My hope is that you all can enjoy reading about yourselves without the mechanics causing distractions. In any case, I welcome your comments. Thank you, Marilyn, for pointing out this situation to me.

Last, if you haven't already read the Foreword, please do so in order to get in on the secret of who I was and why I decided to share these journals and photos with you in this public venue. KPMH

JOURNALS, LETTERS, AND MEMOIRS OF KAREN McCANN

Saturday, August 26 [Letter to parents]

I have been here at Wau for more than a week, now, and have successfully completed my first week of teaching.

I have some things to mail to you and cannot decide how to do it. Airmail is terrifically expensive, but I guess I can stand it just this once. I want to send my log and some pictures of our group of missionaries.

Our Group of Missionaries on Board the Canberra

One picture goes to Kermit Westerholm for the Texas Lutheran Alumni newspaper and was paid for by the mission for advertising purposes.

My mail has been sparse, and Iíd love to have more contact with the home folks. You just donít know what a completely new life this is---me and all the Aussies!

School was coming a little easier toward the end of the week, but I know it will be a long time before I get adjusted to teaching three grades in one room. We are losing one boy (his family is going to America on furlough) and gaining two more boys and a girl. In my room. These three are some of those who came over with us on the ship. Doris is also losing one and gaining one.

I am already so sick of my four skirts I could scream. I plan to buy some material in town Monday and make a new skirt, maybe yellow.

Iím finally completely over my head cold and sinus disorders. I feel pretty good. I even got over that terrible drowsiness I felt at first.

By the way, Iíd like your recipes for meatballs and tomato rice soup. Rita is interested in having some new ideas about what to cook for supper.

[Saturday August 26, Journal Entries]

No news, today. Everything was very usual. I went up to the school after breakfast and worked all day long, with breaks only for tea and meals. Tried to work out lesson plans--13-week plan in general, and detailed ones for the next week.

Heidi Strauss, Erika Strauss, Maria Maurer, Hildegard Strauss, and Unknown Little Girl in Front of the School
(Note boy, probably Jonathan Nagel, on stilts in the background)
This Photo from the Collection of Rita Jericho Jahnke

I went through the syllabus for New South Wales schools and have a little better idea as to which grade level should know what. Didnít finish, however. By the time supper was over, I had quite a little headachy feeling, so I came back to the room and skipped devotions and the party for Markie and Freddie Brandt. Iím losing my only model student when Markie goes. Hate to have him leave, heís been very helpful, too.

I began a letter to Mike, but by 8:30 I was so sleepy I crawled under the covers. It was somewhat warmer than usual, and clear and breezy outside. Usually, itís cold and still at night. Didnít even need my extra blanket.

[Sunday, August 27 journal entries]

Breakfast at 7:45 today. Came back to the room and wrote a letter, then went to the compound church on the “vehicle” at nine oíclock. Took my camera and shot a couple of pictures. It was a lovely morning--sunshine and blue sky, white fluffy clouds.

A little while after dinner (following noon rest) I went on a short walking trip with Doris, her friend Edna, Rev. Maurer (one of our guests, an older German missionary), Karin, and five of the older school girls, including Rev. Maurerís daughter, Maria.

Rev. Maurer drove us to the other side on town, and there we parked at the end of a street, walked across a narrow footbridge, and began following the stream up the hill. It really isnít a stream at all but a ďwater race.Ē

Rev. Maurer With Helmet; Karin Keuler in Jeans
Possibly Doris Prenzler in Dress Carrying Lunch Box

School Girls in Dresses, Rev. Maurer

The water is channeled down the mountain to be used for sluicing gold. Wau is the center of the New Guinea gold mining industry and was the site of the original gold rush.

Sometimes the water in the race was in a stream bed, but often it was carried around a mountainside or across a gulch or creek in a tub-like affair. When we came to one of these places, we had to walk atop the race on a narrow plank laid down the middle for this purpose.

The walk was most fascinating. Especially interesting was the varied vegetation. There were many lush flowers, with poinsettias and bougainvillea growing in mad profusion. Besides these, there was lantana in bloom, also hibiscus, and other flowering shrubs. Along the opposite bank when the stream was in its own bed, the side of the hill was damp and shady, and beneath the larger bush and trees grew many varieties of unusual ferns. Also growing there were wild lavender orchids the size of a quarter. In one place on a rocky incline were wild African violets.

We were climbing slightly the whole time we walked.

Native Hut Made of Old War Rubbish

Twice, we came across clusters of native huts, one made of old war rubbish (tin, etc.) and higher up, of bush material.

Native Huts Made of Bush Material, Water Race on Left

The natives here came out to have their pictures made, among them a little naked pikinini (which is the pidgin word for child, son or daughter). We passed gardens with papaya and taro, and saw bamboo and tree fern growing near the houses.

The Villagers' Water Supply

At about 2:50 we stopped for afternoon tea (we had carried snacks and drinks with us), and then turned and walked back. We only walked for a little over an hour on the way back, as we had fewer things to stop and gawk at. The views were marvelous, as we often could see the distant mountains.

View of the Valley

Another View of the Valley

Once we had an excellent view of a native garden plot in a small, high valley or level place, with the big valley and the village of Wau stretching away in the distance, framed by those majestic mountains.

The Big Valley and the Village of Wau

I really hope my slides are good--hope I didnít get aching shoulders (carrying the camera) for nothing!

When we got back, we were so hot that we got into our suits and headed for our little pool, that is, Karin, the girls, and I did. However, the sun had left us, and it was almost 5:00. At this time, it is usually beginning to get cold, so we didnít stay in for very long.

I bathed and dressed in my one dress (new gray plaid travel dress) and heels for supper and church. We had a communion service. Rev. Hage is here now on vacation, and he conducted the service.

Afterwards, I talked to Mrs. Frerichs. We had “supper” for the adults after church, and ended up at her house. I didnít get back to my room until almost 11:00. And I really slept! Second night in a row...best two nights since I got to Wau!

[Monday, August 28]

As I had not finished my lesson planning, I stayed in school most of the day today. This was a holiday for the kids, in honor of the visit of a government educational officer. Whenever he comes, he permits the school to choose a holiday whenever it likes.

The morning was lovely, and I didnít feel at all bad to be sitting at my desk working. In the middle of the morning, Hansi Munsel (one of Dorisís sixth graders) and Jonathan Nagel brought me a lovely bouquet of flowers.

-

Hansi Munsel and Jonathan Nagel

There were three kinds of purple ones and several orangish ones, ranging from a pastel salmon hibiscus to bright orange-red dahlias and some others that I donít know. Also, beautiful orange canna lilies.

Hansi is a real doll...slated to be the appealing, he-man type. He has lovely, piercing brown eyes with heavy dark brows. And he has a mad crush on me. Doris said he had one on Charlotte (the teacher before me) last year--he likes to get crushes, I guess. Anyway, he certainly makes me feel good. I have at least ONE male admirer here! At supper tonight, I wore the very last dress I hadnít worn yet, my blue plaid cotton with little straps, and he gave me a lift by making appreciative noises and complimenting me with, ďWow! Flashy!Ē I nearly withered of embarrassment!

Besides all this, I am sitting at his table as of Sunday noon, and do I ever have to mind my Ps and Qs---NOTHING escapes him. I grin inwardly, thinking how much less bread and jelly and peanut butter Iím eating now...guess heís doing SOME good, anyway!

After lunch, I rode down to the airport to say goodbye to Freddie and Markie Brandt, who are leaving for furlough, and to Mrs. Frerichs, who went home after her yearly holiday here at Wau. Then afternoon tea and more work.

After supper, Doris and I both went up to the school to work, and about 8:30 we went down to the kitchen, and Doris made tea for us. She ate a pawpaw, and I ate a banana and some cookies.

I wrote some letters before I went to bed and read a little. Iím going to work my way through all the childrenís books I havenít read.

-
Hitty and The Good Master

Iíve finished Hitty and am now on Kate Seredyís The Good Master. Miss Weiss [Texas Lutheran education dept. professor] would be proud!

Some new guests arrived today--the Walters. The man works at the Madang Supply House and is Judy Normanís uncle, of all things. I think that is some coincidence! He brought news that Don Jampsa is in the hospital in Jagaum with an appendectomy. I really feel sorry for him; would love to write him, but Iíd best not, as the stinker would naturally think Iím chasing him. Well, I hope he gets well soon.

[Tuesday, August 29]

Ummmmm--another good nightís sleep! Am I getting used to the place?

Back to school again today. I had a pretty good day, considering. There were only a few things for which I wasnít well prepared. Like Bible Study, for instance. Otherwise, I teach five subjects every day to three grades. Thatís a minimum of fifteen lessons per day; plus odds and ends such as science, social studies, art, music, and poetry, and remedial reading, which crop up only from one to three times a week. YOU try it!

Got along surprisingly well without Markie. Used Danny quite a bit. Even Eric taught the little ones for a while, for me.

-

Eric (Fourth Grade) and Ann Theile (First Grade)
Have I ever mentioned Eric Theile? Fourth grader, son of a government officer and a New Guinean woman, adopted by Ken and Juanita Theile, missionaries here in NG since about 1940-something. [Actually, the 1940s date was wrong. Ken and Juanita arrived in New Guinea in October, 1951, and spent twenty-three years there in the fields of evangelism and education. -KPMH] Eric is a doll of a boy, with luscious eyes, and only by his coloring and hair would you ever know of his New Guinean background. His adoptive sister, Ann, one of my two first graders, is full New Guinean. Sheís a little doll. And they are as American as any children I know at home.

From 3:15 on, I gave my first piano lessons. I had a great time--thought it was bunches of fun. These kids get a fifteen minute lesson once a week and have only thirty minutes scheduled practice time per week. I have the more advanced students--all of Dorisís older ones. Also have to give lessons again Thursday afternoon.

Tonight after devotions I had choir. The older kids. They donít have to be up in the dorm until 8:15, so we try to keep them entertained at night, until then. They have choir Tuesday nights, and I am elected to step into Charlotteís place as choir director. Ha! This was also fun. We worked on Greensleeves for a time--two parts. Then ended up singing spirituals. I love these kids. More and more every day. Iíve decided not to quit, after all. (Ha!)

From a Letter to My Friend Joanna

[Wednesday, August 30]

A normal day in the life of a teacher at Katharine Lehmann School! I taught!

In the afternoon, Rev. Hage came in and talked. He is the man who teaches in the teacher training school at Bumayong; he gave several of our lectures at Lae. He is here at Wau on vacation.

He really did help me. We discussed my problem class--third grade. He gave me lots of suggestions as to how I could do remedial work in reading. We talked until almost six, and of course, I missed my usual before-supper bath. Ugh.

After supper, I sat and watched movies with the kids--ones I had seen last week, of course, Mickey Mouse; and The Three Stooges. But I stayed because of Hansi. I had promised to sit with him at devotions, and I just stayed sitting to be polite. I felt icky, though; headachy.

Went home right afterwards and went to bed. No bath or anything. But I was beat! It had rained all day long and was so horribly messy and dirty. I was sick of it all.

[Thursday, August 31]

Last day of the month. One more day of teaching in the week.

Another quite normal day, except that I had an observer. Rev. Hage came in and stayed until 11:00. Watched me give the remedial lesson he had helped me work out--the phrase method. And wonder of wonders, it WORKED! It really did. Iíll be forever grateful to him. Even in that short few minutes, I could see progress.

He doesnít approve of the way Iím handling my schedule. See, I have to change it around every day in order to be where I want to be. And he maintains that it should remain fixed. I donít know. We shall see. Iíll probably quit rearranging soon, as it IS an awful lot of extra work. But how Iíll do it is beyond me.

I have felt good, REALLY good, all day. I got up early and washed my hair, bathed, and changed my bed. (The only other thing that could pep me up would be something new to wear! Soon Iím going to have hysterics, Iím so sick of my clothes!) Of course, I was late to breakfast, but I sure was spic and span!

THEN the sun came out! Oh, lovely, lovely, LOVELY day! I had been praying for a sunny day...I was SO sick of that slush. And I thawed out. Yesterday was horribly cold. All the kids were wearing six layers of clothes. And it was so damp. But today--perfection!

This afternoon, I read poetry to them again. I love to do this--to see them pick up a poem, and ask for it again, and to walk around quoting parts of it, and to love it.

The Night Will Never Stay

The night will never stay,
The night will still go by,
Though with a million stars
You pin it to the sky.
Though you bind it with blowing wind
And buckle it with the moon,
The night will slip away
Like sorrow or a tune.

~Eleanor Farjeon~

I wrote on the board Eleanor Farjeonís “The Night Will Never Stay” and had them copy this into their poetry notebooks, then taught them the melody I wrote for it--the minor one.

Also checked Jonathanís eyes--found he canít see the board from the back of the room, so moved him to the front.

Checked Jonathan Nagel's Eyes and Moved Him to the Front

Then I gave piano lessons again, all afternoon--much fun. I love doing it. Heard that the kids I had Tuesday say they think Iím a good teacher.

Bathed before dinner, put on my white pleated skirt and orange overblouse (crop top). Felt good in that bright color.

After devotions, I went back up to the school to work a little, and some of the older girls came up--Angela Frerichs, Erika Strauss, and another. Also, Hansi traipsed over in his p jís to show me his stamp book. The boys were called up to the dorms, but the three girls stayed and talked for a long time. They are sweet--and are typical adolescents.

Am sleepy, time for bed, ĎNite!

[Excerpts from letter to parents, August 31]

It is just about the end of my second week of teaching--only one more day in this week! Today is a most lovely day, too. It rained all day yesterday and was cloudy the day before. I kept thinking, ďOh, for a day of sunshine!" It really hadnít been pretty since last week. It was awfully cold yesterday. All the children were wearing two or three undershirts and a couple of sweaters. I nearly froze! Iíd give anything for some warm pajamas and a heavy sweater--and some SOCKS.

Wauís altitude is only about 4000 feet, not nine. But itís cold enough just as it is. Believe me. My room especially is cold--wouldnít I love my electric heater and hairdryer! Too bad!

Iím terribly sick of my four skirts. If I donít get some material, soon, Iíll go mad. Did I tell you that my trunks left Sydney by steamer on August 22, and I will not receive them for at LEAST another month?

It was so lovely today that I herded my kiddos outside for one class. They just pick up their chairs and take off. Mmmm, the sun felt good!

Did I tell you Iím over all my head trouble? I feel fine, now. Am also taking antimalarials regularly. There are anopheles mosquitoes here, and Iím sure I have been bitten by them, but no one up here gets sick.

[Friday September 1, Journal Entries]

TGIF!

Today, the mission truck from Lae was due. It usually comes early in the morning, so the children begin watching for it as soon as they get up.

[Karenís note, 2005: Though Lae was not far from Wau as the crow flies, the road was eighty miles of switchbacks through mountainous terrain. The mission supply truck would leave Lae at about 3:00 a.m. and would arrive about five hours later.]

Seeing that the truck brings mission mail and many packages from home, full of food and other goodies, the children go wild the day it is to arrive. Everyone calls it by its name, The Bedford, and Doris says they start giving false alarms at about 6:30 a. m. If it arrives anywhere up until 8:30, the children may stay out of school for a few minutes to get their packages. After 8:30, they are stuck until morning tea time. Today the Bedford arrived at about 8:35. How disappointing! (For the children.)

Since we knew Mrs. Virgil Brandt and children were coming today, I had the children give the room a good cleaning. This family of Brandts had traveled to New Guinea with our group of missionaries, and Mrs. Brandt was to bring three of her children to enroll them in KLS.

The Virgil Brandts and Children, on the Canberra

[Journal Entries, cont'd]

Morning tea came. Such excitement. Then the TAA plane landed at the airport, and soon Gil brought the Brandts and another family up in our vehicle. [I should probably explain that when we were expecting people to arrive at the Wau airport, our staff kept an eye out for the arriving commercial plane; upon spotting it, Gil jumped into our Bedford and arrived at the airport shortly after the plane taxied to a stop.]

I had the children working on arithmetic with Danny Diemer in charge, so I ran down to the dining hall to greet Mrs. Brandt and the children. We were so glad to see each other--sort of like homecoming. Lissie showed her and the children around the campus, and at sports break we went over to the dorms; all my girls met Mrs. Brandt and Sandra. She went ahead and moved the boys, Vance and Ross, into the dorms right away, but Sandra sheís worried about. So, sheíll stay in the cabin with Mrs. Brandt for a while. Sandra is quite emotional and cries easily. She doesnít want to leave her parents. Trouble ahead?

Before dinner, Mrs. B. and the four younger children came into my room and visited for a while. We had a nice long talk. Then after dinner and noon rest, Sandy and Kathy came up and did art with my class.

[Excerpt from letter to parents, September 1]

Mrs. Brandt, the wife of the teacher who came on the ship with us, came today.

Eunice Brandt

She brought all five of her children, three of whom she will leave here in school. Two are to be in my room, and itís going to be a little hard, since they know me. Sandra is still calling me by my first name, which must stop right quick-like. I was so thrilled to see Mrs. Brandt, as I had really enjoyed her company on the ship. Sheís a very sweet woman and awfully youthful and attractive. She and her husband are really torn up about having to part with the children.

[Journal Entries Cont'd, Sept. 1]

I went to town shopping with the boys and bought some material for myself: aqua polished cotton with a rose design. Also had some rust colored drip-dry laid away and ordered a pattern. After supper, I went up to the dorms, sat in devotions with the little girls, told them part of “Thumbelina,” afterwards. Then I popped into the little boysí room. Proved I could get on a top bunk without stepping on the lower. What fun!

Finally got to Lissieís room and started working on my skirt. First, I couldnít work the machine (treadle type.) Then, I worked it fine, and sewed up what I had intended for the top and bottom. Finally quit about 11:00, and had my pleats sewed in and hem pinned up. Now for a waistband and zipper. Glug. And how to make the rest of it? Left Lissie at last and went to my room to bed.
Photo of Lissie from Rita Jericho Jahnke



Must say a word about Cessna customs at KLS.

LMNG Cessna

The mission-owned Cessnas (light planes used mostly for delivering supplies to outback stations) come every so often, and when they do, they usually buzz the school before landing at the Wau airstrip. At such time, everyone takes off running for the outdoors. The children may leave the school building as soon as the teacher gives permission. They hear the plane when itís still far away, and how they distinguish it from all others is beyond me!

Children's Voices, 1961

Everyone yells “Cessna!” and makes a mad dash for open spaces--even the adults. This happened Monday (a holiday) during morning tea, and again Tuesday while we were in school. Much excitement. The Cessna always brings mission mail, packages, etc.

[September 1, excerpt from letter to parents]

To answer the questions in your last letter:

1) Wau has no wet or rainy season as such. Some days itís cold, other days itís warm and sunny. I still havenít been hot, though.

2) Here is my schedule:

breakfast, 7:20
school begins, 8:30
morning tea, 9:30
sports (recess), 10:45
dinner 12:00
noon rest
fourth grade resumes classes, 1:30
first to third resume classes, 2:00
afternoon tea, 3:00
fourth grade and German children have German lessons, 3:15 - 3:45
others do homework
school is out, 4:15
I bathe and change clothes
supper (ďteaĒ) at 6:00
school from 6:30 to 7:00 (corrections, singing, etc., really, just baby sitting)
devotions, 7:10

Tuesday and Thursday afternoons I give piano lessons to the advanced students (fifth through seventh graders) from 3:15 on. Tuesday nights, I have the older ones for choir.

The little children have to be in bed by 8:00 or a little after, and the older ones by 8:45.

3) The school is VERY well equipped for being so small. It has an excellent library (though not catalogued), and thereís not much to be desired. Itís good.

Itís almost midnight and definitely time for bed. You really need your beauty rest at this place. I usually go to bed pretty early. Weekend is coming up, and Iím afraid I will spend every spare minute working on lesson plans. It takes a terrific amount of work to prepare all these lessons! Hope I end up teaching something, when all is said and done.

[Saturday September 2, 1961; Journal Entries]

Boy, what a day! This morning, I overslept as usual, and just barely made it to breakfast. Then I came back to the room and moved my bed and put my assorted papers away, finally. Decided to put my suitcase away, so I looked in the cabinet atop my closet and found that Christmas decorations are stored up there. So, I looked in the other cabinet and found some more junk, heaven knows what it is---an old toy pistol, some lap lap material, etc. Just as I was in the height of my industry, Karin rushed over to ask me to go on a hike with her and the older boys. I declined, said I had to finish this, but she begged. So! I hurriedly changed into my pants and my only remaining blouse, and put my tan canvas shoes on, as these are the only suitable ones I have for walking.

The boys were all raring and ready to go, standing over by the dorms, holding up a long, heavy rope.

----

Jonathan F., David N., Hansi M., and Vance B.

There were Jonathan Frerichs, Walt Hertle, David Nagel (“Nigsy”), Hansi Munsel, Traugott Jaeschke (“Shaggy”), and Vance Brandt (who is newly arrived.)

Walt Hertle on Right, in Front of the Dorms
(Little Ann Theile on Left)

Well! If I had known what I was in for, for the next short hour, I would have turned around and marched right back to my safe little room!

In the first place, Hansi insisted that I hang on to the rope in front of him. We took off down the hill behind the dorms with me hanging on for dear life. It wasnít that the hill was steep, but the boys persisted in taking it in leaps and bounds. Only sissies WALK down the steep inclines. Everybody ELSE RUNS! Dum de dum, de dum dum dum! Hi-O Silver....AWAY! So I clop-clopped along with the best of them (with Karin at the end.)

We soon reached the road that winds around about our Katharine Lehmann hill at the bottom, and took off walking it.

The Road to the Junk Heap; it Winds Around Our KLS Hill
Viewed from Window of Teachers' House

Shortly, we found ourselves at the junk heap.

We stopped.

Junk Heap!

What the heck?

I was soon to find out the sad truth. THIS was our destination! However, the revelation didnít come to me until I was down there with the best of them, and it was much, much too late. There was a truck dumping a new load just as we got there. We waited until it left, then walked to the side. (You must understand, the junk heap--garbage dump--is off to the side of the road down a horribly steep incline.) I soon learned the value of ropes in mountain climbing. The boys tied the rope to a small tree at the side of the dump and proceeded to climb down. As Karin and I followed, they asked incredulously if WE were coming down, too!

“You donít think I came all this way just to be left behind, do you?” (Me and my big mouth!)

So, down, down, down we went, over tin roofs and oil drums and car parts and old tires and beer bottles and batteries. Down, down, and around.

“Where the heck are we?”

“In the rubbish heap, of course!”

“WHAT are we doing here?”

“Weíre collecting valuable JUNK, of course!”

Inner tubes, batteries, lead that can be melted, etc.

Oh, yes, and a pumpkin or two from the vines that are growing all around and over the heap.

“Isnít there an easier way to, uh, get back up?”

“Sure, Miss McCann. One time, we cut a path through, over here at the side so we could drag the balus up (wrecked airplanes from the war). Iíll show you. You can have roots to hang on over here. I THINK this is the path we made.” (It goes straight up.) “You canĎt tell too well, of course, because itís overgrown with kunai (bush grass) now.”

“Hansi! Hansi! Bring your knife over here and cut a way through for Miss McCann. Iíll follow behind!”

So, we took off, straight up, under the bushes and vines and kunai. (My nice, clean hair.)

“Wait! Thereís nothing to hang onto here. Iíll cut steps for you, Miss McCann.”

Step. Step. Step. Step.

“Itís too soft, here. Iíd better go get the rope so you can pull yourself up!”

“Hurry, Hansi, Iím slipping. Do these little hairs from the kunai ever come out of your skin? Do they hurt long? Thanks, Hansi. Uh! Uh! Oh!”

The road, at last.

“Give me a hand, will you? There! Well, Iím ALMOST as good a boy as any of you!” (But, sometimes, it is nice to give up and admit youíre just a woman, after all!)

At this point, I shed my shoes. They were just about ruined, and the least I could do was to save them the wear and tear of walking home. We followed the road back to KLS, the long way around, me barefooted, all of us hot, tired, dusty, and thirsty.

Itís been four years since Iíve gone barefooted! And the boys were walking fast to get back, and I kept having to run to keep up. That last lap, up the hill on the main lane to the school, just about did me in.

Up the Hill on the Main Lane to Katharine Lehmann School

But, I made it, little the worse for wear. Only a few scratches, several stickers, a couple of rock bruises, a pair of ruined shoes, and lots of dirt!

I bathed before lunch and slept almost all afternoon. Got a headache, missed afternoon tea, and woke up headachy and hungry. So, about 4:30 I went over to the kitchen and robbed the cookie tin and drank a glass of milk.

Supper at 6:00. I dressed up. White skirt and blouse, earrings, and heels. Saturday night. Because we are going to Bulolo at half past eight in the morning, the kids had Sunday School tonight, and we adults had devotions as usual. I played the piano as a favor to Rita. [Karen's note, January 2006: Rita was the organist and pianist for our KLS nightly devotions and our on-campus Sunday church services. After I arrived, I began playing occasionally in order to give her a break.]

Rita Playing the Piano in the KLS Dining Hall
Photo Courtesy of Rita; Taken about 1965

[Journal Entries, cont'd:]

Then I decided to mess around on the organ for a while. Might as well figure out how to play without a pedal board. The older kids came over and listened for awhile, and asked me to play some songs on the piano for them. After they left, I joined a canasta game, then watched a Rook game for a bit. Didnít even attempt any lesson plans. Wonder when Iíll do them? Weíll be in Bulolo all day tomorrow. Well, we shall see what we shall see!



© Karen McCann Hett  All Rights Reserved 2005-2011

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Karen McCann Hett




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