The is THE Life
It’s a fight – A Constant battle with the elements, your surroundings… your mind. There isn’t a time when you truly feel at home, because you never will be. Kenya is a beautiful country and sometimes I am really happy to be here, but the fact remains that there is always something missing. Being in the Peace Corps sounds like the dream opportunity, and it can be. However, it is not quite the “Adventure, World Saving Job” that you hear about. In fact, Peace Corps said it perfectly “It’s the toughest job you will ever love.” I am sure we have some world changers in our midst. In my volunteer class alone we have some power houses that are going to make a big difference in some lives here. I would like to think that I am considered one of those. I try to be. Mostly though, when you boil all of us down to our very core, we are a rowdy group of stubborn wanderers. In my opinion, this makes the best volunteer. I think a lot of the time the reason Peace Corps Volunteers succeed for the entirety of our two year service is because – we just do. It takes a significant amount of mind power, strength, and patience to withstand all the elements that comprise leaving all you have ever known for a developing country you don’t understand. Then you realize, a couple months in, that you are not on vacation – you live here and you will continue living here for 2 more years. Not because you have to, but because … Well, You do have to. Remember we are stubborn and resilient. We might battle depression on the daily and sometimes we won’t leave our houses, but the season will change and we’ll make it. We have to make it, because we said we would.
My family and friends can tell you, over the years I have had some lofty dreams. I have had some pretty unreachable dreams and I have changed them over and over again. Some may remember me as fickle. It is true. However, few things have remained constant and that is I wander and travel and have had Peace Corps in my thoughts since I was old enough to know what it was. Now that I am here, living the dream, I know I will make it. I will sit in my house today and battle the tears. I will call my friends and we will find relief in having someone that understands us. We will be amazed that we have been here 6 entire months!! Mostly, we will talk about food and the ways the culture drives us insane. In the end though, we will hang up and curl back into the pajamas we haven’t taken off yet and sulk just a little bit more. It is a roller coaster of a life here; there is no doubt about it, but when you are up – You are Sky High. It is staying up that is the difficult part.
In celebration of our 6 Months living in Kenya I want to tell you some of the weird habits we have acquired. Maybe it will lighten the mood, and it probably will make me laugh. So:
- We have taken to letting the weeds grow high enough in our backyard to afford us some privacy while we try and sunbathe – Gotta get rid of those strange farmers tan :o)
- Rigging up heavy rocks with random pieces of rope to work out with.
- We never care that our $2 Egyptian wall clock is wrong – because no one else does
- We get really excited when we find extra shillings and can buy eggs, because our chickens don’t lay any for us
- Deciding what to weed based on what the chickens will eat, and also what might be edible for us… It’s always a mystery
- Constantly making up new rules to old games because we play them so often
- Putting peanut butter on everything
- Listening to music at night to block out the animals – Current Favorites, BobIver, Enya and Ray LaMontagne
- Always packing a rain jacket, headlamp and book no matter what time we leave the house
- Speaking “Special English” when we forget we don’t have to
- Taking pictures of all the food that looks remotely appetizing. It makes me proud. Sorry I haven’t showcased them to you yet. You wouldn’t be as excited
The best part is that we don’t have the luxury of developing the REALLY weird behaviors because we still have to show face to each other. I won’t expand too much on what my friends are doing but it involves inside pee buckets, drinking dirty water and growling at children. So yeah, we have it rough :o)
Posted on November 16, 2012, in 1st Year!!!, Peace Corps and tagged Africa, Blogging, Children, Cooking, Friends, Habits, Hard, Humor, Kenya, Life, Marriage, Peace Corps, Relationships, Sadness, Volunteering. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.