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.:: The Daily Cowbell ::.

Monday, August 22, 2005

"Mr. Webb, will you unlock my room for me?"

BOYS’ DEAN’S OFFICE – My first day as a dean ended without any fistfights, choice words, stealing, running through the halls, sneaking out, Ramen spills, in-dorm firework shows, floods, fires, or earthquakes. All in all, it was a pretty successful day.

It all began at 11am, when Bible teacher/guidance counselor/travel arrangement dude Lauran Merginio, Evan Oberholster, and I piled into the school bus to pick up 15 students from the airport and bus stop/Silver Springs Hotel. Between loading up luggage, moving to the 2nd location, loading more luggage, driving back, and unloading all the luggage, we were probably off campus for four hours! Needless to say, I was pretty exhausted when it was all over.

Once I was back, I picked up some lunch, brushed my teeth (my new addiction: Crest’s Vanilla Mint toothpaste. I look forward to the end of eating, just so I can practice tasty oral hygiene.), and headed over to the dorm. There, I reviewed dorm procedures with Mr. VerSteeg and helped guys get settled in. A few hours of that (with a quick supper break), and it was 7pm and time for dorm worship.

Mr. VerSteeg rang a buzzer in the office 5 minutes before the start of worship (so the guys would know to come), and guys started filing into our worship room. Within a few minutes, the room was filled with about 25 students, half of dorm capacity. Most of them were black, natives of different parts of Africa. However, about a quarter of them were Philipino, here at Maxwell since their parents are missionaries.

We began worship with song service. I was surprised that the guys actually sang, and loud, and in harmony! Back at home, the “cool” thing to do would be to not care less, but not here. Later, I was informed that the guys won’t sing in front of the ladies, so that brings it back to earth a little. Nonetheless, it was the first glimpse that, although I went to an academy similar to this one, this place was going to be different than anywhere I’d been before.

Next, Mr. VerSteeg introduced himself as the dean, and then introduced me, “Mr. Webb,” as the new assistant dean. It’s strange, because guys come up to me now and say “Hey, Mr. Webb, can I…”, or “Mr. Webb, will you…”. I’m not used to this! Every time I met a student, I introduced myself as “Chris… er, um, I mean, Mr. Webb.” I think the guys got that it was new to me and that I was a good guy, not full of myself. But I’m still a mister, so I am the adult in the situation.

After a short worship, I ran over to the gym with a group of guys to supervise open rec. I got to talk to Mr. and Mrs. Thomas a while, and I got to meet a few students that I’ll be interacting with over the next 9 months. After an hour, we closed up shop and went back to our respective dorms. As I was sitting in the dean’s office, I was shocked to hear my cell phone finally ring! My parents actually got through the few Nairobi international lines, into my phone. However, as I was walking back to my place, I lost service, and we spent the next hour trying to figure out how to call me.

After a while we gave up and settled for chatting. My dad had to leave (to take my sister to the Backstreet Boys’ concert in Kansas City), so I talked to my mom for a while. It was nice to actually have a conversation with her, even though it wasn’t speaking out loud. I ended up going to bed at 11:30pm, ready to wake up in the morning to do worship.

Ok, that’s all for now. I’m going to work on some stuff for the dorm. Another update is coming soon!



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