Friday, November 02, 2007

8 weeks

today is the 8 week anniversary of my arrival in freetown! faye said we need to celebrate and that she'll buy me a coke. i said that the last thing i need is another coke. i rarely drink regular pop in the states, but i cannot get enough of it here... oh i love coke. bottled. canned. on ice. lukewarm. love love love coke.

soooo, a lot has happened since late september. cami and faye both left for the states at the end of the month. faye's trip was planned, but cami's departure was a bit sudden. they are both back now, and things are getting back to normal, but that week and a half without either of them really wore me out. i said a lot of "i don't know the answer" and "i don't know how to do that" during those 11 days. ah, humility.

also, we moved. it was a very quick and chaotic move, but we actually moved, so no one is complaining. it happened at the end of ramadan, which made it even more interesting. i said to a friend during the process, "moving never goes as planned, and we live in africa, where NOTHING goes as planned to begin with... so i wonder what today is gonna be like..." we had a lot a lot a lot of help from some very generous friends who loaned us trucks and workers and boxes and all sorts of things. oh!! and the funniest part... we had a specific day that we needed to be out of the old house because someone was moving in. but we were still waiting on some little details to be finished at the new place. so on a wednesday, faye and i were talking to some friends about needing to be out by the next tuesday. it seemed like plenty of time... what we were forgetting was that the weekend marked the end of ramadan, which meant a 3-day weekend. however, we didn't know exactly which day was the last day of ramadan because they had to wait to see what the moon would do in saudi arabia. so the holiday would either be friday/saturday/sunday. or saturday/sunday/monday. but we wouldn't know until thursday night, and this was on a wednesday. so at 10 o'clock on wednesday we realized that we absolutely had to move on thursday if we were going to be certain that we were out by tuesday... i'm tired again just recounting this. anyway, it was crazy, but it's over and here is a picture of my new room:

the new place is great, and so convenient. i can walk anywhere work-related that i need to go. and we can catch transport to a lot of places right out of the front door. we have a pretty good breeze most of the time because we're on the third floor and i can see water from my bedroom window! it's really far away, but i'm from the midwest, so i don't care. i live by the sea!!! the biggest negative for me is that the place is so loud. so so so loud. all day it's loud. usually quiet by 11 at night. loud again starting with the call to prayer around 5:30. many of you know how difficult it is to wake me up. i love to sleep and i do it very well. but not here. i wake up early every day, and i run on not enough sleep until i'm so tired that i can't function, and then i get 10 hours of sleep a couple of days in a row and start the whole process over again. so that's kinda hard. but i'm adjusting.

things with the kids are going okay. we're getting used to each other. they push my limits sometimes, and i am insensitive sometimes, and in between those times we laugh and try to get to know each other. again, adjusting.

tutoring the little ones is going well. that's my favorite part of the day. monday i will start working with them at our house instead of at noah's and i think that will be much better. first of all, it's more convenient for me, so i'll have more time with them. secondly, the child who needs the most one-on-one attention goes to school right by our house, so he'll be able to get there before the others and get the attention he needs. also, there won't be other people going in and out of the house so the kids that have trouble focusing might actually be able to focus. i'm excited about the change. and the kids are REALLY excited. they just like to be at our house. it's maybe something like what i felt when i got to go to Grandma's. oh no, did i just equate myself to a grandma? i think you know what i mean...

i've been to the beach twice so far and i'm going again this weekend, so i'll try to take some pictures and post them. and then i can introduce you to some of my new friends. i've made some really fun friends who i enjoy a lot. they keep me sane. most of the time... i'm still me, so i can't be sane aalllll of the time. you know.

okay thanks for being so patient waiting for this boring update. i love you all and will try try try to post more often. happy fall! i can't believe it's november... it's getting hotter here and colder there. i'm all mixed up. anyway, ENJOY!


JaraBeara said...

so that's the room we'll be staying in when we visit?

beth said...

oh steph i love reading about your daily life. i've been reading a long way gone and think of you guys all the time, each time i'm on the metro getting my face ripped off by this kid's story i stop and offer a little prayer on your behalf.
much love.

angela said...

hey girlie girl! so glad to read your words again! the room looks lovely! i'll be praying for rest and peace in the midst of urban life and ministry. would love to figure out some way to see you there in mama africa. love you girl, you are always in my prayers! ange

Jenny said...

Love to here a bit of your life! It's still kind of surreal that you are actually there. I'm so happy that you're getting settled! Love ya!

laura said...

steph--the room looks great! thanks for all the updates--always good to hear what's going on in SL and with you.