Ramadan is over!
Trip Start Aug 30, 2009
13Trip End Apr 28, 2011
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Where I stayed
After the 30 days there is this crazy big day, kind of like our Thanksgiving, called Korite
After carb-nation, the party started. Someone in the village owns a boombox from like 1990 that they hooked up to a fully-charged car battery for the night. They strategically placed this fatastic piece of machinery in his wife's compound and blared the drum-banging Senegalese music for all to hear. Senegalese love to dance; however, for whatever reason when I showed up not a single one was dancing. And upon my arrival they all start clapping and chanting "Penda, Penda...", expecting that I will breakout in bootyshaking awesomeness that all women with jaay-fondes (large butts) are known for. I, as we all know, have no butt but apparently that does not matter. So I, like the good little volunteer, start dancing, and you know what, only one other person would dance with me. Ridiculous. These people dance all the time but when the white girl starts to dance they all of the sudden become shy and inhibited like teenagers at a middle school dance
Work: the latrine project is well underway. We are in the midst of writing our grant and hopefully construction will begin in Dec/Jan. Myself and my neighboring volunteer are covering our two villages and a Pulaar village right next to mine, a total of 160 latrines at the moment...yikes. Additionally, I am looking into writing a demand to have a health hut put in my village. My local counterpart who works at our nearest health post suggested this as a potential project idea for me. I have no idea what I am actually getting into; however, he really thinks it could be a sucessfull project. As of now they are forced to either walk or take a charette 7km to the health post in my neighboring volunteer's village. There is not an actual road, it's more like a small path through the bush and it takes forever. So pregnant women birth their babies in the village and basic healthcare is simply not-existent. I have no idea if this will actually pan out; the head doctor in my district has to approve the demand first, and if approved it would be follwed by a 3-month training stint at the health post for one lucky member of the village
The water pump is still stuck on the well...of course. And I am currently working to figure out a way to get it off the pump and render the well functional again. The millet pounding machine should be fixed when I get back to site on Monday, Inshallah. I feel like a fulltime babysitter for 250 people. I am forevery fixing/repairing/taking care of the village and it's problems. I know that part of this is what being a Peace Corps volunteer is and part of this is my village's inability to conprehend and execute anything on their own, something I am working with them to change.
I am now in Tamba celebrating my birthday...yay. Then back to real life and the village.