My English class was at a temporary lull, somewhere between singing and starting an in-class assignment. I was busy correcting an exercise in somebody's notebook and feeling tired and dusty and sticky and hot. I'd had a lousy couple of days and my inner strength was starting to erode.
Then, suddenly, I got an unexpected present.
The class president raised his hand as I passed by his desk and pulled something out of his notebook.
"Here, Teacher," he said. "A gift. We took this photo for you."
I received the photo and started to smile. "For me?" I asked.
"Yes, Teacher," he said. "The picture is for you. It's for you to keep."
I looked it over in earnest, and then tried hard not to laugh.
I only somewhat managed.
"I love it," I said. "Thank you." And I really, really meant it.
I love so much about this photo. I love their solemn faces and the way that the class president (upper left) is posing with the Livro da Turma (the official Class Book). I love that their school uniforms match the colors of the photo border, and I especially love the flowers on the corners.
It has all the elements of the perfect Mozambican photo, and it's a wonderful lembrança of three of my favorite students.