By Jen aka ‘Smurf’

Day 11 of our trip dawned brightly, with the sun shining and the birds singing…..well when I arose it was cloudy and a little bit chilly but it could have been lovely first thing! This is because, a little bit unexpectedly, we all had the morning off. Most of us spent it catching up on some much needed sleep, attempting to wash the African dust out of our once sparkly, but now grubby, CWB t-shirts, or just settling down with a good old fashioned book (to be fair, the last two points were mainly the girls in the group).

Our bus arrived to collect us at 11.30am, and once again we set off down the extremely bumpy African dirt track (7km of this road really makes you appreciate the quality of the roads in the UK – and I never thought I’d say that!!).

Our first duty of the day, which was originally supposed to be just Clare, but turned out to be the entire group, was to meet the local media and answer a few questions (most of us just sat with a lovely cup of coffee, while our ‘Botswana Celebrities’ Clare and Mick answered the questions). A quick pose for a team photo and we were off to our next school, via a SuperSpar to pick up some lunch of course. Bambi (Sam) again amusing the group by dropping her money at the checkout – that’s five times now!!

The school was called Phatsimo Primary School and it was lovely to see two teachers, Mrs. Orekengi and Mrs. Maleka, who had participated in the coaching during the previous two days. Some quick introductions to a few more teachers followed, and it was also nice to meet Mrs. Sechele who is the head of sports at the school.

We set up three stations on the outfield (I say outfield, but we have all now got used to playing on dusty open spaces, with the odd tuft of grass on if we’re lucky). There were two batting stations, and one bowling (which soon turned into just a throwing and catching station) to coach the 100+ children that were there. The session then ended with some mini games being run, the majority being ‘Rapid Fire’ cricket, and the inevitable ‘hit the ball as high in the air as possible for the kids to try and catch it’.

It is always so amazing to hear the children chanting ABC and CWB over and over, and hopefully the message we are trying to deliver will make a difference. Jonno, as always, got the chanting started, but everyone else in the group soon followed suit. Unfortunately all good things have to come to an end, which the games inevitably did, but still the children hung around hoping for more. We soon learned that starting high 5’s, or touching knuckles with them soon meant that you were swarmed with other children trying to do the same. Some of the boys are definitely now missing a few hairs on their legs and arms!!

Now that the hard work of the day had been completed, we made our way into town and had a wonder around some of the market stalls, if you didn’t need to find an internet café of course. Jonno, Adam, 3 words (Rachel) and myself soon found Mimi’s café, where happy hour had just started and beer/cider was 10 Pula (roughly under £1). There must be some sort of homing beacon for no sooner had we ordered our beers, who should turn up; Mick (typical Aussie) and Clare (typical Essex).

After beers had been consumed, the entire group met and went to get takeaway pizza to take back to the lodge. After 45 mins of waiting, when they said the waiting time was 12 mins, we eventually received our order and could make our way home.

It was a chilled out end to the day, and we are all looking forward to the last two days left in Francistown.