Our kids have only ever experienced one Sports Day - in 2008 - held at a UN camp in Monrovia, where the kids competed on the baked red dusty drill-ground watched by Nepalese peacekeepers:
But this week sees their first British Sports Days, held not in Liberia's baking sun but in the cool drizzle of a typical green and wet British summer. The baked red dusty ground has been replaced with cool wet grass, and the sweaty parents and UN soldiers have been replaced by onlookers huddled under umbrellas...
...but you can't take Liberia out of the girl. Anyone who has lived there will know that babies get wrapped up - I mean REALLY wrapped up - when they are unwell. Obviously Libby doesn't remember being a baby in Liberia, but last night she slept in her thickest winter pyjamas, socks and a woolly hat, despite it being one of the warmest nights of the year.
Today we made one of our favourite Liberian dishes. It should have been made with sweet potato leaves, but in their absence we used spring greens and spinach, and I should have chopped them finer (in fact next time I'll probably use a food processor)...but I must say, after all that, it wasn't half bad!
The recipe said it should have served 14, but Libby ate bowlful after bowlful after bowlful, and now we just have enough for a light lunch tomorrow!
The only thing missing was the atmosphere: we lacked the sticky cheap plastic table cloths and chairs, the locally made aluminium spoons, the chipped bowls, the 30+ degrees temperature, and a cold Club beer.