Thursday, August 25, 2011

By Reader Demand: Our Lives as PCVs Part 1

Hello Everyone, Thanks to those of you who voted on the poll. I would love to get some involvement from you guys so maybe we'll try it again. I was thinking that having more focused posts could keep them shorter, clearer and more organized. Also, hopefully it would make for interesting reading - Sarah, note taken on the women's issues! There is so much we would love to share that we have been learning and experiencing. I think since I am online a bit more I'm going to try to post at 1-2 week intervals, but Shane doens't want me to do it too much so you all get bored, so I'll try to keep myself under control. Photos are coming, we promise! I'll try to do one really cool one I took yesterday with work, it is incredibly representative of Lesotho. Also, I posted a link to the Free Rice website, check it out if you like trivia and donating food through WFP. I would like to put it out there if anyone would like to check out the African Library Project we've hear it is a great program that is active in Lesotho and there is already a library in our town, but it doesn't have a ton of books, it is also a great way to get books in to schools. If anyone wants to collaborate on a project here please get in touch with one of us by email. It seems like it could be really cool! Everyone is so sweet with talking about care packages, we definitely don't expect them but the couple that we have gotten have been really pleasant suprises and we have enjoyed and appreciated tham - but we know that they are expensive and again, of course, we don't expect them! It was really sweet though to read your comment Ellie (and Larry) it is really fun to know that you guys are keeping up with us, we are thinking of you guys often too!
Now that I have prefaced this entry with house keeping I'll try to be complete but not too long. I'll start by talking about the striking reality of life without conviniences. Please, enjoy your next trip in the car - not having to carry your grocerys home on your back, especially your next hot shower or bath, being able to use your oven with no worries, having central heat or air conditioning, having a washing machine, dishwasher, computer, watching movies, listening to whatever music/podcast/audiobook... again enjoy those things the next time you do them in our honor and maybe even tell your washing machine what a great job its doing - really! So we now have a few more ammenities than we did in training, but they of course are still limited. I never realized how OCD I was about washing my hands until it became incrediably inconvinient to do so - like having to fetch water, and boil it and then mix it with cold water until it is the right temperature and ideally have someone else pour it from a pitcher and then the pitcher often runs dry before you can actually get the soap residue off your hands and then find something cleanish to dry them - as paper towels are nonexistant here. That is how we wash our hands, and we want to do it a lot too, so we don't get sick - but really... it is a bit more difficult. That was just washing hands, I'll spare you all the gorey details of taking a bath, but I will say it happens in a small basin, a washcloth is a must, and only a very small portion of one's body (if you are lucky) gets to be actually warm at any given time, also I have fully given up conditioning my hair - it takes about 1L of water just to shampoo. Last weekend we tried to have a treat and take an actual bath because we have a tub in our house- really, just a tub, the faucet doesn't run in to it and we have to heat water on the stove. It took three rounds of heating all three of our cooking pots just to fill the tub half way and to an ok temperature - this is our life now - as I said please embrace your next shower. Now there is also doing the dishes, which again happens in a basin, and we have to heat water and it seems very technical - which Shane has been really working at trying to figure out - I generally just try not to think about it too much. Also, we are now lucky to have a real, flushing toilent in our house. However, in training of course we did not - I have always previously taken being able to go to the bathroom comfortably at night, I will no longer do that! But, I also have always taken a reasonable temperature for the toilet seat for granted as well - I also will not do that any more, it is the little things really. On that note, I would like to take the time to post the photo before I have to go - will continue on the same subject next week. All of our best!
Carol and Shane 

1 comment:

  1. I was talking with a friend about this years Rainbow gathering and I got all sappy and started missing you guys. :) I need to just write a letter and stop comment-whoring but I just had a thought, have you guys thought about using skype? If your internet is up to it of course, and I'm sure you've probably thought about it, but it might be something valuable to you guys. Hope you two are well. P.s. - the place looks beautiful!