Tuesday, September 20, 2011

things you didnt see today

>> it's a fun game, i promise!

1. a 15-year-old boy saying "Love without sex is like going to school without your uniform"
2. me crammed into a space the size of a small coffin (the africans got a huge kick out of this, and so did i.. i love waving with half an arm out of the poda-poda at students in neighboring villages, :)
3. a 15-year-old boy saying "Love without sex is like going to university and not getting your degree"
4. me and a good sierra leonean running to my house just as a huge storm comes in, cut to us laughing and soaking wet because we didn't quite make it
5. two dead dogs in the street
6. getting a ride with a friend ive made in freetown (she remembered me and took me almost all the way to my doorstep and i didnt have to squeeze into a space the size of a small coffin!
7. a taxi on the side of the road that had been in such a horrific accident that it was hard to tell which part of the car had once been the front and which had once been the trunk
8. a beautiful sunset over the atlantic ocean from the east side's perspective
9. a man going into a shop and literally ordering a hunk of meat, which then sat on the dashboard of our taxi for the remainder of the ride, looking all meaty and stuff
10. me smiling and getting dinner with a friend at the junction here near the hostel and her amazing chicken sauce and rice (and a warm star beer from hawa, my 'i made it to freetown alive' beer)

see? fun right? i love and miss you all.

Monday, September 19, 2011

sounds like a sequel

>> so my school got its exam results back. they were poor. very poor. i would hope to not get in trouble for this blog post: im beginning to see the creation of a large group of late teenage - early twenty-something men (since most of the women do not take the exam) that are poor, desperate, and frustrated. they do not have the necessary education to get the jobs they may want, so they drive the motorcycles, sell the food, and feel generally unsatisfied. what did we have at the heart of the last conflict in sierra leone? a large group of late teenage - early twenty-something men who were desperate and latched onto any cause they felt might improve their situation. i'm not sure what the solution is ( maybe something about education ) but i saw a lot of my students who got their exams back and they were itching for a fight and did indeed have one later that night that ended in police involvement. just a thought. i love and miss you all.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

k, thanks september

>> this is has not been my best september. to be concise, since i know you're thinking 'ugh its one of his posts where just talks about himself imma go get a coke' i made a fool of myself multiple times over in a short period of time, culminating with this delightful unplanned trip (jaunt) to freetown to get my post-exposure rabies vaccination. ill let you fill in the blanks on that. however, beginning with my arrival at the hostel (which was helped by some nice Sisters of the Holy Name Church at Aberdeen ((backstory: i was waiting first, guys walked up, taxi arrives, i walk around to get in, guys have taken all the seats and pushed over to the other side, keeping me out, taxi pulls away. Sisters of the Holy Name Church see this happen and see the look of, oh, fury, on my face)) and i'm hoping that this is the end of my september troubles. please? // in other news, we're not teaching. we were supposed to start september 12th, but the pay package was not passed (this was supposed to have been passed in march. makes you wonder about getting wedding invitations) so here we sit. classes are supposed to start tomorrow, but my principal told me that we are likely really going to have effective teaching september 26th or into october. dear sierra leone, the reason peace corps is here is to help with education. this, this right now, is part of the problem. i love and miss you all.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

mid service training and, out

>> just having finished our mid-service training, (and by the way, it's 'training' not conference as i had initially thought,.. apparently we are still being trained..), it's again a reminder of how far that we've come and how far we still have to go. most of the volunteers are really pushing, getting involved in multiple projects and working to really get a lot of development underway here. we're all getting sierra leone off to a fantastic start, laying the foundations of something that will continue to blossom for many years to come - it was great to see everyone, and even better to leave and head back to site and get back to work / not work. // as is often the case, the packages my parents have sent me for the past little while all seem to see each other on the way (oh hey. yeah. bryan? omg yes! we should totally go together and surprise him. okay! *giggles) which means that three packages, aka the height of an African primary school student and weighing as much are now my fun task of getting back to the village. such is life, yes? // we took a bunch of the salone-2 kids out last night for their first real night in freetown, this meant a bar on the beach (that has no name), then to ace's, a nightclub that seems to never sleep, where we danced until the early morning. they all seemed to really enjoy it, and i think it was a great taste of freetown for them - what they'll come to realize as their escape from the village (as long as they don't escape there too often, right? *looks around awkwardly*) // heading back to gbendembu tomorrow, should be there for three weeks before heading back here. not really in the most superb of mindsets right now, so i'll close here. i love and miss you all.