Friday, October 17, 2008

Something to break the silence.

So we’re in the 11th hour. Or month as it turns out. I’ve been in Africa just shy of a year thus far. Eleven and a half months. Now let me check on my “PCV Life Cycle,” to see where I should weigh in, emotionally. Let’s see….”Impatience with self, program” Check. “Blame on program.” Check. “Constant Complaining” Almost. “Lethargy” mwhahaha! Next question! “Haughtiness with new trainers via super identification” …nah. So we’re good. I’m not totally wanting to quit and come home yet, so we’re doing good.

I can’t believe how quickly the months have gone. Sure, community training and language training seemed like a damn eternity…but the last 9 months flew right by…Kind of hard to believe I had friends that graduated, some married, some to grad school…all in the time since I’ve been here. It’s unbelievable how quickly your lives move compared to mine. Maybe I’m having too much skin contact with the fertilizer and its causing temporal distortions in my brain.

Work proceeds as fast as grass growing. Today I was actually busy starting planters of oregano, basil, spinach, lettuce, leek, cucumber, and parsley. I have two trays of basil almost ready for transplanting too that have begun giving off their aroma – smells like mozzarella. Very excited about those. It is also good to note that the one currently operational garden has not died yet. 15 spinach plants, 10 lettuce still alive. So points for me on a working project I’m basically winging.

I’m finding the hardest part about this journal is finding stuff worth discussing and talking about. It’s just that life is so slow here. Weeks go by with nothing new to report or stories to tell. It’s bizarre that its really an absence of everything, good or bad. Nothing good to talk about, nothing bad to discuss. Although I am appreciating the lack of drama here…

I think I’m becoming emotionally constipated – the inability to play music I has been grating on my psyche for a while. My guitar skills haven’t been improving with more practice, I just suck at playing more songs. I get frustrated more often than getting relaxed. I need a piano. damn. I was never really a writer…maybe I’ll stick with yoga.

Summer’s here. Already we’re hitting 80 degree weather. Oh, and I sent in my absentee ballot last week! I’m not going to tell you who I voted for, I’d rather let you guess.

I’ll try harder to find things to write about. Promise.Happy October. Hope the pumpkins are coming in.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Well, here we go, the first real update I’m attempting from my room via The wonders of technology. And this first real-time post is dedicated to a certain Mr. Axel Kargler, who was amazing enough to send me one of the best books I’ve ever read. The Silmarillion – read it, if you’re into fantasy, and have enough time on your hands. The reason why this is post is for him, is that he asked several questions ages ago in his letter about me and Africa, so I thought I’d post them here for all to read. Thanks again Axel.

.How Much German is spoken in Namibia? Quite a bit actually, since its still shaking off the remnants of turn-of-the-century colonialism, it isn’t uncommon at all to find someone that speaks German. While Afrikaans is the usual language of choice, it isn’t difficult to find those that understand the high influx of German tourists.

.What are your standard meals? Anything exotic? Realistically, I mostly eat fruits and veggies, and peanut butter. The first two because I always did and they’re my favorite, and the PB because its cheap, and a good source of protein. Every now and then when I’m at a party or braai (BBQ,) I’ll get to eat Kudu, Oryx, Impala, or some other kind of antelope. There’s one specialty called “Smilies,” which you need to visit for. So you decapitate a goat, and boil the head. The way the skin pulls back gives it a huge grin. Hence, it smiles. :)

.How are people responding to your lessons on AIDS? I seem to be getting good receptions. Since I’m telling and teaching people stuff they haven’t heard before, I usually hold everyone’s attention. I think it also helps that I’m not a Catholic AIDS worker telling them to stop having sex. Cause really, wtf?

.What else do you do besides that? Hydroponic gardening. Check out the last big post.

. How do people treat you in general? For my sake, I’m treated very well. For many of my friends, they are the only white people around – and for some, the first white person they’ve seen. But since I’m in a fairly well built and established town, I’m not that much of a celebrity. Just a normal person. Which is a very good thing. Very good.

. Who would win in a fight, hippo or rhino? Hippo. If you don’t believe me, try getting near one. Maybe the rhino though, if it had a uzzi...i instantly thought about the Calvin and Hobbes about the Trex flying around in an F14

. When did you get this package? I got this package about 3 weeks after you sent it. But since its been a month since, I suck at getting online when I can. But not now!!!

.How much access do you have to AC, water, and the like? My home has water and electricity (no hot water…yet.) and since I work for the Ministry of Youth, my office has AC. But as I said, I’m fortunate. I have friends that poop in a bucket. Or outside.

.What is Usakos like, is it a village? I think its classified as a town. Its about 3-4thousand people, paved roads, electricity, and water available. About average for Namibian standards, and not a bad place to call home.

.Who is the better hunter, Muldoon from Jurassic Park, or Locke from Lost? Muldoon, cause he hunted dinosaurs… even though that ate him…and he never got lost. Locke got lost.

And like your letter Axel, I didn’t edit this at all. It too is a “rather stream of conscious-y.” Also, thanks for sending a copy of your sermon, I loved it. Keep me posted on your writing.


Friday, October 10, 2008

We need Bill Cosby here

Ta da! New post! Dont get too excited...turns out this is kinda expensive.

But regardless, heres a quick update on my life. I no longer have a Peace Corps roommate. Long story made incredibly short, Ian decided to end his PC experience. It's a shame, but it is what it is. In other news, I've got an extra bedroom to rent, if you would like to have an African experience, or if you need a place to retreat to if the Maverick wins the election.

I've got one hydroponic table up and running, with 15 spinach and 10 lettuce seedlings planted. Lets see if they survive.

And now for a touch of humor, these are Namibian learners (students) that say the darndest things to fellow PCVs...

Submitted from Leah, a physical science teacher:
On a science test she asked what a Sphincter is. His answer: "A mythical creature with the body of a lion and the head of a man." Nice

and from Eric:
"Describe 4 ways to reduce stress." An Answer from an seventh grader: "1) Have sex 2) Beat children 3) Chew gum, and 4) smoke cigarettes."

That about does it for today. Hope all is well in America. Go Obama!

oh, and a very Happy Birthday to Nicole. I was going to send you a present, but my elephant ate it. His name is Stampy.

Monday, October 6, 2008

So this is a test post. Since lappy is back and online, i've decided to purchase a bluetooth transmitter. So I'm currently in my room, typing to see if this works. Basically, I type into my comp, and it goes through my connected cellphone to get to the internet. Someone send me an email at my gmail account to let me know if this works. If it does, then I can update again, from anywhere at anytime.

;) Cheers