Thursday, June 20, 2013

A Day in the Life

Peace Corps Botswana has just started a mentoring program for new Peace Corps Trainees to have a mentor to guide them through the process of getting here & transitioning to site (where was this program when I came!?). Basically, currently serving volunteers are matched with someone who has been invited to serve in Botswana as a Peace Corps Volunteer. They are open to email and ask questions about anything and everything - hopefully to ease their minds about the whole thing.

I've been matched as a mentor - and I received the following question: "what's a typical day for you!?" Naturally, I giggled (and even typed HA! While answering my email) because it's usually impossible to have a typical day as a PCV. Of course I responded, but after the course of events today, I would have to say my day today pretty much sums it all up.

(I also figure none of you really know what my life is like day to day, so here is a taste)….

My own thoughts will be italicized.

Wake up, do I really have to?
Make coffee & breakfast.
Notice my slipper ripped open on the side, hmmm, yup. I'll sew that instead of spending about 50 pula on a new pair.
Read a little bit.  
Get dressed for the day, it's freezing now. It will be hot later. UGH. What to wear?
Gather all the things I need for the morning.
Start walking to the OVC center (orphans and vulnerable children), can't wait to see my kiddos! Will they understand the games I teach them today?
Walk through village reading flashcards to study for MCAT, please, random stranger, DON'T stop and talk to me for twenty minutes.
Arrive at OVC center, greeted by a whole room of smiling cherubs, I wish everyone I know could witness how freaking adorable and genuinely sweet they are!
Pull sports equipment out of my bag & see the kiddos eyes light up, at what age do we stop being so cute, curious, and giddy about life?
Play games with kiddos at OVC center. Laugh hysterically.

Head back inside for tea time.
Help wash dishes at the OVC center.
Say bye to the kiddos.
Walk back towards my house and see my closest friend in the village with her daughter, !!!!.

like mother, like daughter.
Stop and chat with Tshegofatso for a while, the world needs more people like her. She's such a doll.
Take her daughter, Moso, with me back to my house to play while I drop off the sports equipment.
Listen to Moso ramble on and on and on and on...goodness, child. I understand maybe 1/4 of what you are saying to me.
Make lunch, prepare food and drink for a visitor, play with Moso and family kiddos who have appeared in my house,  how in the world did I become the village nanny?
Leave my house to drop Moso off with her mom again.
Laugh and take pictures with Moso along the way.

sweet lil moso
Arrive at the clinic, greet my co-workers, talk to supervisor about report he needs help with, and head to my office to finish up working on a few items of my own.
At 4:30, leave the clinic to go begin making a cake for my auntie for her birthday, I sure do love how happy it makes each family member when they each get their own cake for their birthday, but oh my, I've made SO many cakes. Turns out my family is bigger than I was aware of when I started this tradition.
Start pulling out all the ingredients for the cake, pull up a chair for one of the kiddos to "help me" make the cake, give crayons and coloring books to the other small ones who have made my living room home.
Measure out the first three ingredients.
Hear a big THUD. Baby is SCREAMING at the top of her lungs, uh oh. What happened now? Real problem? Dramatic child?
Blood streams down baby Aya's face… she cut her head open, I need my first AID kit! This child needs stitches! Stop the bleeding!
Constant crying and tears, what will help her calm down? CANDY!
After controlling the bleeding, head next door to find Aya's medical card, & head to the clinic, oh peace corps. This really IS my family. How many PCV's actually take their little sister to the clinic when her head splits open?
Arrive at the clinic, search for clinic staff, & explain what happened, so thankful I know each and every staff member at the clinic.
Hold Aya's arms down while the nurse shaves a portion of her hair and the doctor gives her stitches, poor baby. She's going to grow up HATING the clinic and all doctors who come near her.
Feed Aya more candy to make the crying stop.
Breathe a sigh of relief, head home, give Aya back to her grandmother.
Clean dried blood off my floor, yay for tile! Easy to clean. Boo for tile! Babies fall and bleed. Mental note: thank mother for buying me paper towels.

the way we left my house - blood & med kit on floor, cake in progress!
Ok, onto that cake I started...I'm too tired for all of this! Ha. Must make coffee.
Make cup of coffee.
Finish making cake with the help of the kiddos.
Sit on the kitchen floor, eat dinner with kiddos, I think ANYONE would judge me for eating cold rice with scrambled eggs and ketchup. But I'm too tired to care.
Go next door to sing happy birthday to my auntie.

singing HAPPY BIRTHDAY with the fam
Take pictures of/with Aya to document the shenanigans.

happy girl - still a goof! 
sweet baby Aya after our crazy events
Eat cake with my family.
Listen to not 1, not 2, but 12 cows roll into our yard.
Chase cows out of yard (in the dark) with other family members, only in Africa. When have I ever chased a cow out of my yard before this?

HORRIBLE picture, but hey, you get the idea. cows running around in the yard at night.
Laugh, gotta laugh. I can't make this stuff up.
Make another cup of coffee.
Michael calls, I sound like a zombie, but I think I feel like one more than I sound like one. He's a trooper.
Finish writing blog post.
Study a bit before bed.
YOGA, my happy time.
BED, how I love you. What will tomorrow bring?

Love & Light,


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