Saturday, September 22, 2012

Some days

Some days, I just don't really want to go outside... It's not safe out there.  In my room, nobody will make fun of my Kiriol, no one can tell me I'm doing my job the wrong way... When I'm in my room, there are no distractions and no one is constantly asking me to give them my stuff.

The thing is, if I stay locked up inside my room, I miss out on my friends' smiles, the laughter of little girls as they run their fingers through my moli (soft) hair, the random and chaotic music jam sessions, the warm sunshine, and the seemingly unending patience of some people as we muddle through a conversation together.

I could stay in my room today... Nah.  I think I'll go out and experience the adventure.

"This is the day that the Lord has made.  I will REJOICE and BE GLAD in it!" (corrections, distractions, embarrassments, and all)

Friday, September 14, 2012

A Thousand Words

I know, I know…  Why have a blog if you don’t update it frequently?  Internet is kind of a tricky thing here, so thanks for being patient with me.  Please excuse the disorganized thoughts of this blog post as I try to catch you up on the last month.

A picture is worth a thousand words, so if I put a ton of pictures [with captions], that will make up for my delinquency, right? :)

 I always wondered how other people “do life” in different countries, so the first few pictures give you the grand tour!

Here is me, sharpening our lawn mower.

This is our well where we get bath water, water for washing plates, etc.  It is conveniently right outside of our house.  We have to take a bike to a well further away to get drinking water.

These are our toilets.  They’re so high-tech that you don’t even have to flush them!

I actually really love taking cold showers, and it’s a good thing too, because we take basin baths every day in the “shower room” that’s attached to our house.

Here is our kitchen where all of us (there are 7 of us now that the YES team has started to arrive) gather for supper.  You can see our refrigerator to the left (just kidding… we don’t have refrigeration… that’s the pantry).

Ah…. This is a very important place… a place of rest.  This is little stool is on our back veranda is my refuge at 6:30 in the morning.  I do my devotions and journal here while I watch the sun rise over the corn.

I think that’s about it for the grand tour.  I’m going to take a commercial break and tell you about a small victory we had the other week.  I made yogurt.  Yes, I did!  With some starter and powdered milk and a sealed container and a water thermos (not normally what you would use in the states, but hey!  It worked, didn't it?).  We were all pretty excited with the results… So much so that I made some more for supper.

Now for some important people introductions.  Every Sunday after church, this is what our veranda looks like - full of our friends.  I love it.  We cook rice and rice sauce and all eat out of the same bowl (or two) like they traditionally would.  It’s often a great time of laughter and fellowship.  Fun fact: if everyone eats out of the same bowl, there are a WHOLE lot less dishes to clean…

Here is one of my language tutors.  Her name is Rana and she is holding her daughter Lukas.  She is a Guinea Bissau native but did some schooling in Gambia.  Between the bits of English she knew, and the Creole I was beginning to pick up, we made lessons work.  I also have another tutor named Gibby, but unfortunately, I have not yet taken a picture of him yet.  His heart for helping me learn Creole is just incredible.  He is married, has lots of kids, works in the fields all day, occasionally preaches at other villages and then spends well over his contracted hour with me (and another missionary here named Chad) teaching us Creole.  Amazing.

I also had to include this picture.  These are our neighbor boys Eva and Benson.  This picture happens to be right in front of our front porch.  Usually these two are quite the troublemakers, but the day the picture was taken, they were being irresistibly cute.  Pardon the bare bums.

And that, my friends, concludes my first real blog post from here.  Thank you to everyone who has sent me emails about their life at home.  I enjoy reading them even though I’m often unable to respond.

With love,