Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Exciting Things Are About to Happen

Yesterday I fell for one of Senegal's tricks... believing that since things had been going well that that would continue to happen. We had been experiencing over 36 hours of consecutive power and we even had water for about one hour during the afternoon! Amazing! I was therefore saving writing a blog post until I went into my room for the time at which time the power cut until approximately 4am when I woke up freezing because my fan had turned on and was causing all of the sweat on my bed and body to evaporate. Nice. I was going to post, but nothing too much has been going on so it wouldn't have been too interesting anyway.

Today I was bound and determined to make something at least quasi interesting and or time consuming happen. My first call was Dioss even though he called me yesterday to tell me that he finished all of the cards! While I was ecstatic with his progress this ticked off the biggest work related activity on my list this week; I had been planning on going to his house every day to check up on his progress. The only thing left to do is buy the envelopes and plastic bags the cards now come in. He's waiting for the wire transfer for the exporter to come in because he doesn't have enough cash to cover the costs, but I thought we could meet and make some type of timeline and maybe go over the accounting. He's in Dakar seeing Pauline off back to France. They still don't have the funding so the catalog so he wasn't in the best of moods.

Next on the list was Diof. Ever since Christine, the volunteer who Diof is now terrorizing, told me of our supervisor switch I haven't been able to get in touch with Diof. I called his cell phone and he didn't pick up so with nothing better to do I went over to the office which is still locked. I called him again from the office and again no answer. This is an ironic roll reversal since it's usually me avoiding his calls, but now I would actually like to get to the bottom of this mystery and/ or meet my new supervisor who is supposedly nice and a woman!

After awkwardly standing outside my office I headed to the post office and had packages from my grandma and my parents! Thank you! I also had to wait for the customs officer so I got to hang out in the air conditioning. I also became facebook friends with all of the guys at the post office.

Shout Outs!
Shirley - Thank you so much for another letter!

Mom and Dad - Thanks for all the treats and reading material. Amazing as always.

Ma - Your package was awesome! The only negative was that Ahmed saw me bringing them into the house and he truly believes that nothing comes from American for me, only for him and immediately demanded candy, dried fruit, and other presents. He loved the Koosh ball that you sent and my family likes that they can hurl it at other people and it doesn't hurt! It provided several hours of entertainment this afternoon.

Since nothing is going on I hung out with my family this afternoon. Ahmed is also bored out of his mind, which causing his obsession with me to grow to new heights. He had several little friends over today, but all he wanted was to play with me. I'm starting to go a little insane. He's driving me up the wall. Just when I thought my patience with small children was reaching the point of a normal human being I found myself having to lock my bedroom door from the inside because he's now strong enough to open the door. I then laid down on a mat on the floor and read so he couldn't see me. Yeah, I know, real mature.

My other family showdown came this evening during the lovely power outage when I was talking with my mom. Ramadan is starting in the next couple of days and I'm really looking forward to it because I really want to make my own lunch. I can't eat rice anymore. I need a break. I breached the subject by telling her that new volunteers are coming tomorrow and that I'll be spending a lot of time at Peace Corps and eating lunch there a lot, but when I'm home, out of respect for my fasting sisters, I will make my own lunch. They don't need to worry about me. Since I am completely incompetent in the eyes of my family, this was obviously unacceptable. I kept giving what I believed to be valid reasons to make my own lunch, but my mom definitely won the battle when got up, told me that Deenba and Jeenaba are here to make me lunch, and then left the room. That was a knockout punch. I may have lost this battle, but I refuse to lose the war.

I did just mention that new volunteers are coming tomorrow and I'm SO excited. It's the SED/ Ag stage aka my stage but a year later. I cannot believe that Friday is my year anniversary in Senegal. I can't wait to see how much dirtier, less afraid, and "wiser" I am than the PCVs arriving tomorrow. That sounds terrible, but it's true. I remember looking up to people a year into their service and thinking that I would never get there. I thought they were amazing. It's absolutely ridiculous to think that I am now that person. Year ago today I left Grand Rapids for Washington DC. My last night in the US I spent crying on the phone sitting on the floor of an open store room I found in the hotel. Tonight, I'm eagerly anticipating meeting new PCVs, avoiding Ahmed, and probably going to re-watch the newest episode of Mad Men that I just downloaded.


  1. Cannot wait to hear about the new stage! We want real details tomorrow!

  2. Alyssa,

    Don't let the newbees see you sweat. You have had an amazing allmost first year. The experiences and growing that you have done will push you forward the rest of your life. We are also addicted to Mad Men and if you can get the Wall Street Journal they have a weekly segment now down by a bunch of psychologists discussing the show. To intellectual for me, I watch for the entertainment value. Enjoy meeting the new crew and indoctrinating them.


  3. Alyssa,

    I am so proud of you for making it a year!

    Also, I laughed out loud at "I can't wait to see how much dirtier, less afraid, and "wiser" I am than the PCVs arriving tomorrow. That sounds terrible, but it's true. "

    So very you. And I love it and I would do the same.