Monday, June 28, 2010

Second Blog Post from Africa: A trend?

Ok first off I told you I am typing on a french keyboard, but here are what the different keys are: a=q.... m=,.... z=w. Just replace accordingly/ oh and :=.

Ok so I survied my first illness in Burkina Faso. Pretty sure I had food poisoning, which was fun. I just felt like I was slowly dying from the sto,ach for 16 hours. I got to poop green and many times. Wish you all would have seen it. It is just a natural assu,ption that when you are in the peace corps you are going to get sick. this fact helped matters because I felt like I was waiting for it to happen anyway; so I just wished that it zwould happen. Now the anticipation is over. So thats good.

I have got alot of e,ail responses to get back to and I promise to try, but this is sometimes difficult to do. So.... yeah *does Burkinabe hand sign for whatever*

French- French is interesting because it sucks. You drop letters: You say sounds I have never heard from words that I have seen. Needless to say that I am not a fan. I have french 6 days a week for 2-3 classes a day for 2 hours. Needless to say this is being beaten into my head. I don`t have an escape from it because everyone around here speaks it. I a, good at shopping in the market and ordering food. Which amazes my professer how I do so well at that.... my friends and family will not be surprised by this.

I went to a night club on Friday night. I got to dance to some music and would have drank, however; They only serve beer here. It is difficult to get any alcohol at all. I a, trying to find sachays (think of these like milk bags from school you can buy many drinkable items in them)of whiskey, but have not been able to find them. Needless to say, I`m drying out. The danching was fun but there is a big difference from america. First off it is 95 percent guys. Girls who go out here are usually either prostitutes or girls gone wild. So the guys just kind dance on each other; not like bump and grind but they just dance with each other. I did see some backing the booty up from many of the young men. It was hilarious to see the opposite here.

I think that is all for now. Im off to maybe answer some emails. Be sure to ask ,e any questions you may have. I will feel free to answer. I have no shame. ;)

BLog edit: my grandma asked me about the food so I will go ahead and adress this.

Things I eat over here include:
Rice in tomato sauce
riz gras (rice in oil)
cucumber and onion in an oil dressing
french fries
sweet potato french fries
salad (rarely)
alot of bread
omellette sandwiches
to (prounounced toe) tastes like tofu kinda gelatinous and covered in different sauces)

I am eating plenty and always find something to eat. I a, pretty sure I have lost some wieght; but it is mostly from biking everywhere that I go.

Good question... Cant wait for your responses::

Oh and my phone number here is:::::
74290322 country code is 0226... I believe: If you want to text or call me. It is free for me to recieve... however most likely expensive for you. ask my mom if you have any questions.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Close to two weeks in!!!! The First African update.

First off I am typing this on a French Keyboard: The A key, the W key; and the M key are in different spots. Please Bare with me.

So Almost two weeks into Africa. It feels like i have been here for a month. The other Stagieres agree.

First off. It is hot. Carol you need to never come here because you would die from the heat. I actually deal with the heat quite well but have resorted to using a fan at night in my room. It is a dry heat and if you spill anything on you... you don.t really care... it will dry in about three seconds.

You think you have skirty people at home. Every girl here is in a skirt and the Muslim women have their heads covered. Betty would be able to show off her various skirt designs with ease. Except for the ones that co,e over the knee. That basically means your a prostitute over here.

One thing also is that there are lizards that run around everywhere. They climb the walls and just basically hang out everywhere: You are not safe from them anywhere. Good thing is that they are way more scared of you.

Now to the juicy bits....
BATHING: To bathe here you take a bucket bath. You take one in the morning and one as soon as you get home from work. You start by cupping your hands and throwing the water over each shoulder. You then do your head. At this point; you get a spongey net thing wet and rub your soap on it. You then use this to soap your body down. Then repeat step one to rinse off. They are actully very refreshing but sometimes cold.

Bathroom: Yes; I poop and pee in a hole in the ground. The pooping definetely takes some skill and I get a leg workout. It is quite an ordeal. I won't go at night because there are cock roaches that haunt it. I just shake the board that covers the hole and pee in it.

Host Family: my host fa,ily consists of four people. There is momma (Alice); Poppa; Laundre (12); and Cedrike (2-4). They are alot of fun. Stephens host mother says that I fit in well because I am also fat and like to laugh. (Calling people fat over here is a compliment)...(dammit)I don't speak french very well so our communication is minimal.

French: Is so freaking hard. You drop letters when you say words and you don't pronounce certain things. I am a novice low speaker and have to get to intermediate high. Needless to say it is my everest.

Things I have Broken:
My bike: within an hour of having it... I put my bike lock on; forgot I put it on and drove off and got the chain all broken with the lock. They gave me a new bike and are using ,e as a lesson to teach the next stagé.

my camera. I dropped my camera in my outside showering area, because I forgot to take it out of my pocket. I set it on the ledge and now the lense wonùt come out. lame.

Amis (friends): My stage group is amazing. They are 22 of the smartest, funnest, and most driven people I have had the pleasure of meeting. I could not be happier with the group. as you can tell I am making friends and my day is packed.

Well I am almost out of time at the post so I think I will end with this.

I love you Mom!!!
I love you Dad!!!
I love you family!!!
I love you bank!!!!
I miss and love you friends!!!!(JJJKE especially)

Hope this works and on to my next adventure!!!!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Day one disasters...and I meet new friends.

Right now I am at the Hampton inn. I will be leaving tomorrow for Africa. It was a big day for me. I had an emotional leave at the airport and then I found out I missed my first flight; oh but my bags were on it. So then I have to get on standby and hope I get a flight to Charlotte. I meet some wonderful ladies on a trip to Philadelphia from Mississippi, they were hilarious. I finally arrive around one o clock and have to find my luggage. Which I finally do. I then hightail it to the hotel. I make it and I have training.

I meet all kinds of fun people at training. I am excited that I will be able to train with them over the next few months. We went out to dinner at a fancy restaurant and then had some drinks and I sang a song on karaoke. I just got my bags rearranged for my flights.

Well I might not be in contact for few days from this point. Having fun and thinking of all you beautiful people.


The night before I leave..

So here I sit. Actually, here I lie. I on my bed looking around my room and what will be my last time sleeping in this room for a while. Most likely 2 years and 3 months. I see my tv and dvd player that I will miss, my movies and books, my bed; but right now I am not thinking about missing any of that at all. People keep telling me about the things that they will miss and the food, but right now. Right before I leave. I am thinking about the people that I am going to miss.

Many people can vouch for me when I say this. I never wanted to come back to shelby county. I was done and all I had were mostly things that caused me bad memories from my angsty teenage years. But over these last two years I have met amazing people and had a chance to reevaluate things. I got to take a look back at all the things I thought I hated, but now I look back on and realize how charming some of the things are.

1. People care- I use to think that people only cared about the things you did and the clothes you wore so they could judge you without getting to know you. I do realize now that they only say and do things mostly because they generally care for your well being and want you to succeed in life. People here in general want good things to happen to you. So their "judgmental eye" alot of times is out of love.

2. People Change- I am definitely not the low self-esteem angsty teenager seeking approval that I was in high school. Another thing that I got to come back and realize. That kid who was always a jerk, probably might still be a jerk... but now everyone else thinks so too. That bad girl who use to get in fights with everyone.. now has a baby and a career and has put the past behind her. If you are still dwelling on how people use to be, give them a chance. Everyone changes, even you. Well that is all that I got for wisdom right now, its tired and blogger won't let me post things. I am to be up in 3 and a half hours for a plane flight.

A few shout outs:

Thank you bank workers for making me part of your guys family. It was not only a job, but it was alot of fun and I will miss you all dearly.

To my friends: I will miss our fun times and most of you aren't even in Indiana and I will still miss you! Send me and email. I can't wait to hear about your adventures as well. Miss you!

To my ex-roomates even the extra ones that might has well of been roommates: You guys were around for some of the hardest and best times of my life. We have been throught it all sickness, death, and family dramas. You should know you are not my friends, but my sisters. I will love you and miss you.

To my family.. I love all of you dearly and can't wait to hear about the special things that happen to all of you.

To my Mom.. Be strong, I Love you more than you will ever know and I know that you love me right back and I will feel that all the way in Africa even.

To my Dad... I will miss you and all the fun times we have together. Our "bonding nights" on Weds especially. I know they aren't the usual; but they will always be something special that we have and I will remember. Love you.

To my Brother: I love you and you will be successful in all that you do, I don't say this often, but I am proud of you and you are turning into a good man. I'm proud that your my brother.

Ok that concludes my love fest and my cry before I leave. Time for me to get focused. I have a busy two years in front of me.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Last day of work!!!

It is my last day of work at the bank and they are trying to fatten me up before I go. Paula made these three layer chocolate brownies to die for. They almost sent me into a chocolate coma. add that to pizza, chips, more brownies, and cookies... I have been given tons of cards and hugs and warm wishes. I am really going to miss this place. It really has turned into a home away from home. I have my own little cubicle, I have my regular customers, and I have the routine almost down pat. That is sometimes a blessing and a curse. I am going to miss the people that I work with the most. I am one of the few people who have had the blessing to work (or at least lunch) with everyone in the bank really.

I have memories here that will last me a lifetime of fun and have made friendships that will always be remembered. I have everything from my first training at Rampart with Paula and having to go through all the transactions and thinking that I am never going to get down that stupid number pad down to be able to use it with ease now.

Some of my memories from the bank:

Jennifer always being across the way for a helpful (or sometimes not so helpful just funny) email or look that we both know what the other means.

Dressing up at the bank for Halloween ...(even though most did not)

Dancing downstairs to my music (while monty singh secretly taped me)

Carol's many phrases and sayings and just look out when Beach Boys is on she is one heck of a singer.

Betty beating me... but with love

Justine's sarcasm and underlying jokes *wink*

Whitney's undying persistent perkiness and her teasing with Rod

Brandi and our high school chatter like we are high school friends at a lunch room table.
Kari and almost scaring her into pregnancy on numerous occasions

Angela and even though she is new our instant Taurus connection

Paula and her animal emails or hearing about her many cruises.

Natasha and the many games we have played online together.. lol.

Katie and her Emma stories

Sue and Gloria and just them at the meetings making me laugh.

Kim baker and how many times I called her wanting Kim Rice..

Karen and I running the branch even when I'm late and listening to tales of her Grand kids and us overcoming our "age barrier". lol.

Eating lunch and becoming addicted to the Bold and the beautiful.

Becoming Jaye's kinda backup...

and so many others...

Just know that all of you have made an impact on my life and have changed me for the better. Thank you Kristin for taking a chance on me and I will miss you all!!!