Tuesday, April 26, 2011

i have a door!

I spent Easter with a few other volunteers about 45 minutes from my house. We got a little sunburned, as happens here on the equator, ate delicious food cooked by Heather, drank room temperature tequila and krest (a sprite-ish wannabe), watched Anastasia, and passed out by 10 pm. When it gets dark at 7:30, and as a girl you have to lock yourself in pretty much by that point, staying up late loses some of its appeal. (I went to bed at NINE last night and it felt amazing.) Anyway, as I was laying in a bed that was not my own, I thought about how I, in no way, have that "ugh, I just wish I was HOME" feeling. Mostly, I think, because I don't have a home right now. It's way less sad that it sounds, so don't feel too badly for me just yet. A lot of times when I'm away for long periods of time, all I want is my own bed, in my own room, but I haven't had that for a long time, so I'm kind of content bouncing from place to place, packing an overnight bag to hang out with some cool people I know, crossing my fingers that my belongings, which have been strewn all over this country in the middle of Africa in various storage rooms, hotels, home stays, etc., are safe and sound. Maybe this is part of what Peace Corps instills in a person. I know for damn sure I can pack lighter that I have been able to in the past.

 Day 1, less of a home than a room with my things in it. 

I think the saddest part about all of that was that, technically, I have a home now. I have fourish rooms all to myself for the next two years, but they don't feel like "me" yet. When I got back to Lira on Monday morning, I went shopping for a few more things I needed (rope for laundry, clothespins, plates, silverware, bleach, hand soap, and a gas tank for my stove). The gas tank was way to heavy to even consider carrying the 6k back to Boroboro (not that I'd wanted to walk it anyway) so I called my principal/next door neighbor who said he could pick me up on the way back. The afternoon was spent watching two carpenters make a mess of my room as they knocked a hole in the wall between my sitting room and bedroom. I wish they had let me know it was going to be a messy affair, because I totally would have, oh, I don't know, zipped up my luggage. Closed my cabinet doors. Put away my iPod. Any number of things that would have avoided the clusterfuck of DUST that I had to deal with when the ordeal was through. My Ugandan broom is a joke when trying to deal with this, I'm going to have to buy a giant squeegee (yes, we have those here) and just dump water on my floor and squeegee it out... but not till they cut the second door into the kitchen.

Denis the Carpenter, with his chisel and block of wood. 

Hoooooly mess

My doorway!!!! (standing in the bedroom, looking into the sitting room)

I spent last night kind of rearranging my things after trying my best to clean it all up (some things might never be the same). It felt a lot more like home after I had access to more than one room at a time, and with a mirror up over my dresser. This morning I walked around the village with the principal and was introduced to the Bishop and the LC1 (the Local Council Chairperson, highest office on the most local level). I then returned home and washed my mosquito net and sheets, since they were embedded with concrete dust still. Apparently my water doesn't work until the afternoon, so I had to wait until then to rinse everything (I'd collected enough rainwater the night before to wash, but not rinse. Yes, I collect rain water. I actually just put my buckets out, hope they don't get stolen!) I also did dishes, ate some ramen noodles, and finished another book. (13!) The carpenter came back to frame the doorway (they cut the hole with only a hammer and chisel, it took like five hours) with wood and cement, and again they made somewhat of a mess. The art of throwing cement into a gap between a chiseled out doorway and a wooden frame must be a tough one to master. There was cement everywhere (this was after I was like.. hey, should I move my things today, is it going to be messy? and was answered, no you leave them, it's ok.) Oh, Uganda.

There is a gnarly looking storm a-brewin', and I wish I wasn't such a scaredy cat that I don't want to hang out in my yard and watch it. Speaking of cats, three stories. One, there was an intense cat-fight outside last night, I really wanted to go check it out, but my mosquito net proves to be enough of a barrier to keep me in bed unless it's something like I've had to pee for 4 hours and my bladder is screaming in pain. Two, today I heard another mad cat fight while I was sitting outside reading, except it was followed by peels of children's laughter. The angry cat noises/laughter alternated back and forth enough times to make me think a cat was being tortured by children somewhere around me. I wanted to go investigate, but I don't think I have a place in the community enough yet to go up to someones house and demand they treat animals with kindness. Three, a cat sat by the edge of my yard this evening and yowled so so sadly. It was a pretty tuxedo cat, and when I went to check it out, I was told that the cat is stubborn and steals things. I think I will put out some dried fish for it and see if I can't get myself a pet. Or better yet, see if it has kittens somewhere for me to steal. This will surely end well, there are no downsides.

Also, my internet is suuuuper slow out here in the village, and I'm really lucky that I have it at all... that being said, pictures are not going to be uploaded or emailed for a while, until I can get into town and be closer to civilization. Sorry :(

Love and miss you all!


No comments: