Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I'm actually really glad the holiday season is over and I can just get back to the day to day stuff. It was a good time for a vacation and to see everyone from my training group who I haven't seen in 3 months! at in-service training. Unfortunately and fortunately, I got Dysentery the week before. Most often one gets dysentery from bacteria, aka feces, that contaminates most food that is either not soaked in beach for a half an hour or boiled. Appetizing right? I won't go into details but let me just say I was ready to pack up my bags and leave the country but I couldn't leave my own bathroom for more than an hour for four days. The treatment for this is gatorade but that isn't sold here so instead we make our own by mixing salt, sugar and lime for flavor.
I got better just in time to travel out with a bunch of volunteers to a beach town, kribi for in-service. While we weren't in all day long technical sessions during the day, we had an amazing time at the beach. We had bonfires, dinner on the beach, swam in the warm water with huge waves, went to the waterfalls outside of town... ahhhhhh I'm missing it already. We also had air conditioning in our hotel room that we turned down so low, just because we could and because feeling cold isn't something that happens often. I put up tons of pictures of the beach.
Seeing everyone was really the best part. I organized Secret Santa, and was a bit worried that something was going to go wrong, or I forgot someone. But it turned out so well! We exchanged gifts right before our final dinner together. Everyone got up individually and presented their gift often with a funny story. People were really thoughtful and for a few minutes there in the humid 90 degrees it felt like Christmas.
I was only gone for a week and a half, but getting back to post felt so good. As soon as the bus I was on hit pavement I was like "HOME!!!!!" And then when I got in my house I killed a cockroach with my shoe and then I was really home. lol that is disgusting but that’s what really happened.
For Christmas Eve a few volunteers in the east celebrated with a Cameroonian family just outside my town. Christmas day we cooked a big American Christmas dinner. We had a tree and each of us saved opening a care package from home until Christmas morning. I also drank plenty of wine and palm wine.
There's just nothing that can replace family, but the family that I have here is definitely the next best thing. I hope everyone at home had a wonderful Christmas, know that I missed you all and I hope you have a happy new year.
Friday, December 5, 2008
So I made it safetly back! I might have mentioned it before but its tough being around so many americans and then not. One of those love hate things. I'm really looking forward to christmas. I'll be traveling into the bush for christmas eve celebrating Cameroonian style and then I'm planning Christmas day dinner here in Bertoua. It will be really nice and the other volunteers in the province are the most amazing people to be around during the holidays. However no matter how great the pumpkin pie is, or if there is a swimming pool and a bottle of 15 year scotch in the equation.. you just can't replace family. There's not subsitution that comes even close. Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday, Miss you all to timbuktu and back!