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Mossie nets, babies... any advice? And new schools....

(7 Posts)
4gotoindia Tue 19-Aug-08 07:31:47

Hi there,
We've been here about 3 weeks, and in our house just over a week. Most things are up and functioning, and we're getting into some kind of a routine. Still struggling with a few things.

Firstly, dealing with the mossies. I have a 5yo and 18mo. 5yo is fine, we put repellant on him at dusk, and he is under a net all night, so no problem. 18mo - the nights are the problem. She is up in the night (god knows why - teething, heat rash, excema, new place... who knows), so we have to get her out of her cot. She gets bitten, we get bitten... one night we got her back in her cot, but with an army of mossies. She woke up covered in bites. So now we've been taking her into our bed. At least she doesn't get bitten - but we don't get any sleep. But now she is getting used to being in our bed, and refusing her cot.... aaargh... any thoughts or advice much appreciated!

Second query is re new schools. Ds is starting at school tomorrow. I took him to see it today, and he hid behind me - didn't want to look at the classroom and the other children, and it generally didn't go v well. We have always known this would be the biggest challenge - we are the only white family in the town, and they've never had a white boy in the school. Altho' it is supposed to be English medium, the kids all speak Tamil, and I even found one of the teachers hard to understand. How to make this easier for him? (He wants to go to school and he wants to make friends...)

Again, any tips and advice would be much appreciated....


Themasterandmargaritas Tue 19-Aug-08 20:55:54

It's always tough the first couple of weeks and a new school too.

Hmm the mossies are a nuisance, we have always found that burning a coil or an incense stick in a couple of places around the room helps. We always spray the room with insecticide (aptly named Doom here!)about an hour before bedtime and keep the door closed . Also if you put a fan on, either ceiling or free standing and put it near the bed, it tends to blow the mossies out of the way of the bed back into their dark little corners.

As for the new school, your ds will soon understand the teachers and the other kids much better than you will! In the meantime I suggest lots of reassurance and hugs but try not to let him see your anxiety, possibly letting him take something favourite of his from home with him might help? Will one of the boys be earmarked to 'look after him'? Show him the toilets and where to play etc?

Hope that helps and fingers crossed.

4gotoindia Sun 24-Aug-08 17:13:07

Just lost my reply on a dodgy internet connection.
Thanks for your thoughts. We'd been trying the spray thing (it is 'Hit' here... Doom is familiar... are you in E Af?), but it didn't touch them. Neither did the fan when on full blast. These are the toughest mossies I've ever come across anywhere. We gave up in the end and fitted an AC unit... Apart from the mossies it cuts out a lot of the noise and the dust, and of course the heat.

Wish the school was as easy to solve. 3 days in and it is still v tough. He hasn't been on his own yet. No, noone was earmarked to 'look after him'. There were no books for him, and the teachers didn't even give him a sheet of paper to write on 'til I asked for it. They don't seem to get that he doesn't understand 90% of what they say. We're going to take it v slowly. I'm finding it difficult to deal with the fact that the teachers hit the kids for things like poor homework.

Themasterandmargaritas Sun 24-Aug-08 18:20:42

Yes I am in Kenya! Blimey tough mossies those, then I think as you have done I would have gone for the ac option too. It was the only thing in Cameroon that worked. All the dc slept like a dream!

Sorry to hear about school, to be honest it sounds dreadful, especially the hitting the kids business shock Is there anyway you have enough energy to home school him? You would certainly get plenty of support on here and ideas where to get materials. If you are worried about the social side of things, could he join football classes at a local sports centre or cricket even? Do you have someone who can look after dd while you spend the time teaching ds for a couple of hours every day? Where are you in India, is it quite remote?

Fingers crossed it gets easier soon.

4gotoindia Mon 25-Aug-08 12:04:02

THanks for the message. I was at school in Kenya, so recognised the Doom!
Home schooling would work - except that we are both (supposed to be) working full time. Today was better. He went with a student we have here with us, and was much less emotional than when he was with me (pulling at my heartstrings!). They've told us he has to stay the full day tomorrow, but it is steaming hot (esp when the power cuts mean there is no fan in teh room - at least 2 hours each day), so we'll see. I'm getting good at being a bolshie mother! We're still trying to find someone to look at dd...One step at a time. We're in a town called Tirupur in Tamil Nadu - big busy place that no-one has heard of. Producer of T-shirts for Gap, Tescos etc. Remote in the sense that we are the only bazungu with kids. (We did meet 2 French men and a norweign woman, so there are some expats!)
Thanks again for the message...

Themasterandmargaritas Tue 26-Aug-08 15:43:54

How did it go today? A bit better? How long is his school day? If it is the whole day is there any chance he can come home halfway through for the first term?

After I posted about suggesting HE I suddenly thought that perhaps you were both working, I seem to remember you posting ages ago about your departure, wasn't it research you are both doing?

I'm sure in time you will get to know a few other wazungu and other locals who will be more in tune with you and your family. smile

Where were you at school? Did your family live here too or did you come here to board?

4gotoindia Wed 27-Aug-08 04:56:49

Yes, a bit better again y'day ... thanks for asking. The school are pretty insistent that he stays the full day, and so far it is okay. Our student helper stayed around the school all of y'day, but not actually in the classroom the whole time - so we are making (big) progress. He is still pretty gloomy about it all, and I'm not surprised - it is soooo boring. In 'Art' they 'learnt' how to draw a birthday cake. 33 identical pictures of a birthday cake with 2 candles. Depressing. So when he gets home we're trying to do all the fun creative things... making a fort out of cardboard boxes at the moment!

Yes, we are doing research - looking at the effects of the textile industry on the town, its people and the surrounding region.

I was at school at Turi near Molo - lived in Uganda, so was boarding.
take care!

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