Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Fam

Today was originally going to be one of those days when if you don't have anything nice to say you shouldn't write a blog post, but my family really turned it around. There are some days when I curse Peace Corps Senegal for making us live with families while PCVs in other countries get the freedom to live on their own in apartments or houses throughout the village, but obviously there is a flip side and sometimes it's nice to have a crazy family waiting for you to get home.

Me: (walking into the compound obviously in a foul mood and sitting down)
Deenba: You look upset.
Me: Yes, people were very mean to me today and called me bad names.
Deenba: Doesn't that happen to you every day?
Me: Yes. (laughter)


Little Abdou is almost a month old now and this evening was the first time Jeenaba strapped him to her back. I think that this usually happens right away in villages, but Jeenaba has been leaving him in the middle of various rooms in our house on a cushion under a mosquito net. To say that he prefers his cushion would be a massive understatement. Before today I had never really heard Abdou cry hard or get really upset. Well, he does not like being tied up on Jeenaba's back and he let everyone know it. He wailed for hours as she tried to calm him down and help him adjust to his new environment/ a position he's going to be in a lot.

Jeenaba is a good mom. She dotes on Abdou and is really good with him, but Deenba is like the Baby Whisperer. She's amazing. She will just put her hand on the baby and he will settle down. When Deenba strapped Abdou on her back he was happy as a clam. This is not to say that Deenba has a knack with all kids because she and Ahmed do not have the best relationship. It's mainly because Deenba doesn't like Ahmed get away with a lot of what he's accustomed to getting away with, but regardless she can't settle him down.

As Jeenaba is struggling with Abdou on her back everyone turns to me expecting that I'm going to be the next one to try. I do not want the first child to be strapped to my back to be a tiny infant so I claim that tomorrow I'm going to carry around Ahmed. He thought this was the most fabulous idea ever. Everyone else thought it was absolutely ludicrous. They laughed and laughed. And then they told me that I'm carrying Abdou around tomorrow whether I like it or not. I must learn to carry a baby on my back for when I have one. Obviously.


  1. Make sure you get LOTS of photos of you with Adbou on your back!! We can't wait to see.

    We had the boat taken out of the water today. Summer is now officially over. So sad.

    Temple is finally having a "9th Grade NY trip for Adults". This weekend 10 of us are going to see all the great sights you guys got to see when you were young. I'm excited. I'll let you know how it goes.

  2. hey, just caught up from the camp. Sounds like you family missed you for more than distracting Ahmed. They've figured out your sense of humor anyway ;)

  3. Alyssa,

    Carrying Ahmed on your back will be good core conditioning, you don't want your arms to be to strong. We will need pictures of your efforts however.


  4. Alyssa you owe it to the world to take that baby and try to calm him. Everyone who knew you as an infant has related stories to you regarding your brain rattling, colic, screaming. It is only good karma to put that baby on your back and try to help. Plus it is another skill along with, slaughteringfarm animals, baking a cake on a gas burner, screaming at cab drivers in 4 languages and eating a mango in a single clean swoop that is bound to blow people away when you come home.

  5. Alyssa, I remember those days when Mom and Dad left you. The only thing that would calm you down was putting you in the car and driving around. Tie the baby to the rooster,hopefully you could make a wagon. Love Ma F

  6. Alyssa,

    The rooster wagon for the baby is an impressive idea. Please take detailed notes so you can show the rest of us when you return.