Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Oshakati: Round Two

The school bell rang on Friday and I had officially survived my first entire week of school. I went home, exhausted, and discovered an empty house- it was looking like another quiet weekend alone. After checking email and facebook, I discovered that Alli was on Skype and decided to have a chat with her. About one minute into our conversation, we lost power. Womp, womp. This time, it was the whole area and we had no idea how long it would last. Luckily though it was back up in about a half hour and I was able to finish my chat with Alli then. A few minutes later Kristi, one of the women about my age who lives next door, came by. Turns out she had decided to stay in the village this weekend and her house was empty too, so she was looking for some company. We hung out for a while and chatted while we made dinner. It was nice to be making a new friend! At some point in the evening, the guys came back, but then left again for a party at a colleagues house, and Kristi and I ended up watching The Princess Bride. I mentioned that I was planning on going into town the next day to get some food and a few more things for my room and she said she had to go to! We decided to go together, which I was psyched about for several reasons, one being it meant I would have someone to help me get a hike. 

We got up early the next morning (the stores close at 1 on Saturday's so you have to get there early) and got a hike into town.  We hit up a few stores and I got most of the things on my list, including some much needed school supplies. I had my ridiculously large hiking backpack with, which looked a little strange, but was helpful to fit most of my purchases in!While we were shopping, I got some texts from some other volunteers who were all going to Benny's Entertainment Park and asked me to join. I mentioned this to Kristi, and she said it sounded like fun, so we postponed the food shopping until later (those stores are open till 6) and headed over to Ongwadiva. We stopped at her relatives salon across the street to drop off our bags and I got to meet/hold an adorable 4 month old girl who made me miss my little cousins back at home! Then we headed over to Benny's, which is basically like a beach resort in the states, minus the beach. There were palm trees, cabana bars, peacocks roaming around, a large pool (unfortunately, I didn't have my bathing suit), sprinklers and yummy food. All for an entrance fee of N$20, or about USD$2.50. I am so going back again with my suit! We soon met up with Erica, a guy named Richard who was a WT volunteer over the summer and was visiting over his winter break from school, and a woman from their village that Richard was friends with. We found a table by the pool in the shade and after a little while, Emily, Kristin, and Abby met us there too. We had a fantastic time catching up, drinking cool drinks, eating chips and Russians (large hot dogs) and exchanging 'first week of school' stories. I was glad to hear others were as lost and overwhelmed as I was feeling! We also ran in to TK, one of my roommates, who was there watching the soccer game with some friends. It worked our really well because he said he could give us a ride home after we did our food shopping. After hanging out for a few hours, Kristi and I had to go to make it to the store on time. As we walked into Spar, the grocery store across the street, I saw that the produce and meat selection was less than ideal, and made a mental note to go to Pick 'n Pay next time. I managed to find a few things to get me through the week though. We then met up with TK, made a quick pit stop so Kristi could buy some mangoes from a guy she works with, and then we were on our way back home. 

The rest of the weekend was pretty relaxing and uneventful. I did some laundry (I'm becoming ace at handwashing!), planned my lessons, graded a few things, and Skyped with a few more people from home. I didn't get a chance to take another crack at cleaning the kitchen, but I figure I will have plenty more opportunities this year to do so. 

Hope everyone's surviving the cold back home! I wish you could send a little my way- we're going through a major heat wave and are anxiously awaiting the rain to cool it down a bit. 

Love from Africa,

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