Liliannie lives in a one room shack with her mom that's at the most 10 by 10 feet. Her mom works at her house cooking dinner. This week Liliannie started eating dinner with us at our house. And the rest of the evening, we tickle her and repeat after her as she points at numbers and practices her alphabet, and play airplane with her and let her twist our hair around. She's darling. But I don't really understand her life. Her entire home is smaller than my room. Something's wrong there.
Most windows here have bars on them for safety. At the IMME headquarters on-campus we have two little rooms to hang out in when we're not in class or at home. Right now there's eight of us in a room that's about 10 by 12 feet. I always feel like we're animals in a zoo. It makes me happy.
My momma's making 1000 skirts for her school where she works as a nurse. She's legit.
The boys here really want to marry bzungu. And they'll ask you, "how do I get a mzungu to marry me?" And no matter how many times we try to explain, they don't understand why that might seem offensive. All they want is to marry you, after all. If I were them, I'd want to marry a muzungu, too, whether that sounds bad or not.
It turns out that I made the same new year's resolution as I did last year. Hug people a lot. Maybe I've found my calling.
Some pieces of advice…
It turns out that the random guy selling skirts at the market definitely knows how big your butt is, and you definitely don't. Next time, let them choose the skirt.
Caution: If you are late getting home, beware the child who stands at corners waiting to yell Mzungu and call forth the battalion children. Running may be an acceptable method of evasion. If besieged and unable to escape, be sure to skip and sing Lion King songs. The children will gladly repeat after you.
Furthermore, although the first few words you will be tempted to learn in the native language may be things like Hi and How are you, be sure to also arm yourself with an array of Don't disturb me and Leave me alone. These will come in very handy when the children try to climb up your arm or just happen to be running around with a knife.
On the note of language. In order to function fully in your new home, learn how to accuse and reject the state of craziness. Spend inordinate amounts of time practicing; after all, practice makes perfect. In addition, practicing exotic languages also creates a functioning family unit, especially when the two talking happen to be practicing different languages.
Next time you travel, go to Egypt. At least they'll offer one woman one camel. Here, it's two chickens to 13 bzungu. Obviously, Egyptians are better traders.
When showering in the dark, be sure to tell apart the soap from the cockroach. And when showering in the morning, as a certain friend of mine learned, be sure to tell apart the water bucket from the bedpan.
Canadians should not be trusted. Don't let their smiling faces fool you. There is not actually a red potion or a blue potion that will make you feel better. And when you don't fix guitars, they don't make baby ukuleles. On that note, don't trust Iowans. Giant caterpillars do not become snakes. Furthermore, realize that the U.S.A. is not actually the United States of America. Rather, it is California, and then everybody else.
On a more serious note, here's the link from the blog before of War Deaths in 2002 and military expenditure and so on: http://www.itszone.co.uk/zone0/viewtopic.php?t=69206
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Stories and Advice
Posted by Sarah Roar at 4:06 AM