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History of AISA: The Real Success of the AISA Conference – the Food

POSTED: September 12, 2018Category: AISA ArticlesBY: Barnabas Suva

The work on the History of AISA book is now in full swing.  We are still accepting contributions in the next few weeks. Perhaps you have a story to share about AISA and the impact it has had on you, and especially photos that may illustrate your story.

Here is one such story.

Graham Mercer, teacher at the International School of Tanganyika (IST)

At IST in the early 1980s we looked forward to the annual AISA conference in Nairobi with an enthusiasm not always engendered by educational get-togethers. Not that the conference itself was uninspiring – IST contributed far more workshop leaders in those days than any other school. But schools, like armies, march on their stomachs. And our stomachs, thanks to Tanzania’s blighted economy (just buying bread or even weevil-infested flour was a daily challenge), were crying out for something a little more exciting than corned beef or mashed potatoes.

The AISA conference provided it. In the form, in those days, of a daily buffet lunch that back in Dar es Salaam we could only dream about, set up on the lawns by ISK’s swimming pool. We would, like Byron’s Assyrian cohorts, come down upon it “like the wolf on the fold”.

And as soon as the day’s workshops had ended (or to be honest, sometimes long before) we would descend upon Nairobi’s supermarkets with similar single-minded fervour.

The rest of the story will be in the History of AISA book.

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