Emanuela Sarfino - Grade 9, Kettering Fairmont High School
Within Monotonous Days, Friendship Plays
My life is, in one word, monotonous. I live a routine; wake up, go to school, stay for sports medicine, go home. Wake up at 5:00, get ready, leave by 7:20. Arrive, interact, Leave at 3:00. Walk to the football field, pass out water and patch up cuts, leave at 6:30. Sleep. Everyday since August, I''ve known where I’ll be, and when I’d be there, but life has a way of twisting one’s arm.
Thursday, September 28, 2017, at 6:30, I called my sister, as I always have, and asked for a ride. I had expected my routine to end, I would go home, and get some rest, but , instead of saying “i’m coming” like she usually would, she asked me “do you want to volunteer with me today?”. I was skeptical at first, I really needed the sleep that day, but she explained that she would be late if she drove me home, “okay, let’s go” I complied.
“we’re going to be volunteering at a church” she began, “there are some refugees there that we’re going to be teaching”. They had moved to America for the well being of their families and themselves, they were facing a war they had no knowledge of, and violence they did not want, so they ran, boarding plane and ship until the fighting was behind them. They struggled and they strived and they began to learn.
We arrived at the church a few minutes late “so much for being on time” my sister mumbled to herself. Upon arrival, we were greeted by a teacher, Mrs. Nuttel, who directed us to our “student”. She took me to a table with a child, and a volunteer already seated. “Nobody told me I was having a partner today” she said slightly confused, “nobody told me i would be a teacher today” I replied, making her chuckle. Mrs. Nuttle came back realizing she had made a mistake, and showed me to a different table. There sat a cheerful girl, with cornrows, and sparkly lipgloss.
“Hi” I greeted, sitting down, “I’m Emanuela, what’s your name?”
“Esparance” she replied, getting out her flash cards. We started off with multiplication, which she new prior so we finished quickly. Then we read, in between pages she would think out loud, she would say “wow, these are nice pictures, I could draw them”, and I learned she loves to draw. “I like this word” and I learned she loves words. She told me how she wants to finish school and learn as much as she can so she could get a good job and send money to her family back in Africa, she told me of the three girls at her school who never applied themselves and how they talked of people in her native language, and most of all she told me this “Esparance is hope in my language, I am hope, hope for my family, my brothers and sisters, and hope for myself”.