First things first! I am finally a Peace Corps Volunteer!
check it out!
This past week was spent in Kigali preparing for swear-in and moving to site! Some of the best times so far! Thursday, after swear-in, we went to the lake where the US embassy owns a lake house and went knee boarding, swimming, played games, and ate lots of good food via US embassy.
Friday was supposed to be spent shopping for house items, but instead a group of us went to the US embassy to lobby for a Women’s rights committee and then to lunch at Bourbon Coffee for a veggie burger and milkshake.
Rwanda is pretty upto date on their technology and they now offer a Wireless Internet card (just like in America) for a reasonable price. A few of us decided to get one. The best purchase I have ever made, works amazingly! After running around town for that, Emily and I started shopping for our house stuff at 7pm. Everything closes at 8pm, except nakamatt (African 24 hour walmart). We went to the Chinese market and started running around the store thowing stuff in a pile and trying to budget everything as well. When we were done at the market we realized we had to walk a few blocks to finish shopping and catch a taxi! Picture this: two white girls, both with backpacks stuffed with items, carrying large buckets full of household items…in downtown Kigali, after dark! As dangerous as it was, I have never laughed so hard at the situation. We met up with other people and i found a new way to get a taxi for cheap! Go to the most busiest place and start a reversed auction. It works.
Saturday, was a sad day….we all packed our stuff and headed for our sites for the next two years. I didn’t leave til 4pm, so I was nice to relax a little and take time to pack up my stuff. My friend Rachael was dropped off first and after we dropped her off it hit me that I was no longer in mini America and the summer camp feeling was about to end. It was dark when I got to site, so my counterpart made me stay at her house for the night, which was nice.
Its now Monday night and I have survived my first day of work. I started writing this blog mainly to tell this one story so here it goes:
So it gets dark here at 6pm, and im scared of the dark. I also have an outdoor latrine…this has potential to become an issue. Earlier today the night nurse told me a lady came in to have her baby and told me to come watch. (I did not see a birthing, I will be able to see one every night if I wish). After dinner, I really needed to go to the bathroom and decided I would go “say hello” to the nurse and just happen to use the toilette while I am there. I get my phone, flashlight, and all 20 keys to my house and venture from my house to the health center (these are only about 20 meters away from each other, but im scared of the dark, so this is a big deal) to “say hello.” Only one nurse works each night (4pm to 7:30am…long time.) I make it there and the gardener is mopping the floor and the nurse is in her office. I realize that I don’t have enough kinyrwanda skills to just say hello and not make things awkward, so I proceed with:
“Ndashaka toilette. Sinkunda latrine n’joro”
this literally translates to: “I want toilette. I don’t like latrine in the night”
no matter how bad my kinyrwanda was she still completely understood me and told me she doesn’t like it either and its scary! We both laughed and I got really excited because she completely understood my fear of latrines in the dark. Complete understanding is a rare occurrence here, so when it happens it’s the most exciting thing in the world. Also I just got the feeling that everything is gonna be alright! I love this feeling!