04 May 2009

My Life

  • 5:45 a.m. - Wake up, get ready, eat breakfast
  • 6 a.m. - Do those morning breathing exercises that Dr. Oz on Oprah said to do.
  • 7 a.m. - Leave for work with my host family (6 of us squeezed into a Kia Picanto, which is like a clown car - je deteste clowns) and my host mother drops her kids at three different schools, me at work and then goes to work herself

Kia Picanto (very smalll!)

  • 7:15 to 4 (ish) - Work - which includes all or none of the following (depending on the day): trying to understand what or who my coworkers are gossiping about (in a mix of Zulu, Xholsa and Tswana), writing reports, reviewing documents, editing grants, going to meetings, doing stuff for Peace Corps, etc.

    Work Side Note: It's especially funny at work when I hear my coworkers gossiping and then I'll hear 'Kess-ee', which is how they pronounce my name, or 'lekgoa' which means white person. 'Lekgoa' it's usually followed by screaming or really loud laughing. I know some lekgoas, and we can be funny, but I'm not sure that's why they're laughing...)
  • 1 to 2 p.m. - Work lunch break which I use to go get groceries or do other shopping. There's a mall two blocks behind where I work and the Post Office is about 5 blocks. There's a grocery store and my bank about 3 blocks away.
  • 4:30 p.m. - Get picked up from work by my host mother
  • 5 p.m. - Go for a walk/jog, sometimes with my host sister and host brother
  • 6 p.m. - Make dinner (I've upgraded to peri-peri mac-n-cheese, yum : ) My host sister asks me if I can actually make anything other than mac-n-cheese, potatoes & onions or pasta with red sauce. I tell her yes, but I'm a lazy cook. Which isn't really true, I love to cook, I just wish I had my own kitchen space to cook. Sharing a kitchen with a family of 7 makes it hard to move around much.
  • 6:30 p.m. - Watch 7 de Laan : ) "dit lekker" (it's nice)
  • 7 to 9 (ish) - Write, do work, watch DVDs, plan for vacations, balance my checkbook, watch TV, clean, etc. Sometimes I make short phonecalls to the US since the rates drop drastically at 8:30 p.m. Before 8:30 p.m., it's the equivalent of like $1/minute! Yikes!
  • 9 (ish) - Plot out how to kill the next flat spider and do one last spider/bug check of my space before sleep.
  • 9 (ish) - Do those evening breathing exercises that Dr. Oz on Oprah said to do.
  • 9 or 10 p.m. - Go to bed and most nights include listening to the neighbor's dogfighting at night. There's like a huge doghouse (taller than me!) and who knows how many dogs, but at night, they fight pretty rough. Naive me, the first time I heard it, I thought "good dogs, I bet they are scaring off an intruder," yeah right. It's every night. I'm thinking it's a suburban dogfighting cell.


  • Hand-wash my laundry - which I'm hoping may change soon b/c I found a laundromat in town and it seems clean and safe enough. It's actually a split Landromat/Tattoo Parlor. Fun combination : )

    Some of my laundry on the line

  • Walk to town - it takes me about 45 minutes to walk to town and generally very pretty. There's this cute cafe that one of the volunteers showed me and I love the atmosphere! I sit, read, write letters and drink bottomless tea. I usually also go grocery shopping, go to the bank, etc. in town on the weekend. This weekend I actually ran into people I know! It's weird and exciting to actually recognize people now. But that means I always have to wear make-up when I go to town. Well, win some, lose some : )

  • Hang out with other volunteers - there are a few volunteers arond Mafikeng who are actually leaving between June and September. All the other volunteers from my group are clustered in other provinces, but the closest volunteer to me from our group is maybe 2-3 hours driving. Haha, so since I can't drive, that's like a half-day on a public taxi-bus.

That's pretty much my life right now. But I'm continuing to meet people and get the guts to ask for rides (I feel like such a mooch doing that!). This weekend I'm going to take the pilgramage to the laundromat and then check out a pizza place (!!) that I found the other day.

Sala sentle,



Amanda Peterson said...

Wow! it's incredible how different our days are!

sassyyankee said...

Dang! And no Cherry Coke, either!

Anonymous said...

It's amazing how easily you will start taking rides from people once you've been there awhile.