Friday, April 21, 2006

I survived an entire month at post! I got to come into Niamey to see all my friends. It's really good to be around them and see what their first months have been like, and realize I'm not the only one who's hot and bored. My boss came out to visit this yesterday, and we rode into Niamey with him to avoid
bush taxis. He was impressed with my integration. I've become a kwara-ize, or member of the village. He was impressed with how much I've helped them work around the village, not that I've done anything huge, but if someone's working, I pitch in and lend a hand. I've helped roof a house, make bricks, dig mud, water gardens, etc... It's definitely a good deal of work, but nothing too mentally taxing.
I've leaned up quite a bit, I'm down to about 168 or so, and I think I need to start including some peanut butter or tuna into my diet so I don't lose anymore. Don't worry, I've still got plenty of energy, and I'm eating plenty, just dropping some stored fat. The pics here are of my house and concession, I'll also try to find one of my bald head. It's a bit different. I'm going to let it grow out
now I think. By the time it get's long enough to be hot, hot season will be over, and I think I want to go on vacation next year around hot season, so we'll see how long it gets. On the subject of care packages, I love to get them, it's like christmas, or maybe even better. I've come up with a list of things that are always welcome:
  • Beef Jerky
  • Drink Mixes (preferably sugarfree)
  • Ground coffee
  • Granola bars and the like (chocolate will melt)
  • AA Batteries (the rechargeables don't like the heat)
  • Sunflower seeds & such snacks
  • Pictures
  • Anything Instant (just add water)
If I come up with other things, I'll add them later, but those are things that I'm sure to use and enjoy. Do pace yourselves though, packages are expensive and I'll be here for another 23 months :-) Well, I'm going to close for now, but I'm in Niamey for another few days, so I'm going to try to be online from time to time for chat.

Friday, April 07, 2006

I've survived over two weeks at post

I'm not suposed to be coming into Niamey my first month.  They want me to be integrating well into my village and all.  But yesterday I came down with a fever and aches, so I came in for the standard malaria test protocol, which was negative, of course.  I've been taking my pills religiously, but they had to be sure.  I'm not complaining, I got to come in to use the internet and noone can holler at me about it. :-)

Post is good, the awkwardness has died down a lot, and I know the important people around me.  I've been working a lot and have lost about 25 lbs. since I came.  I'm eating plenty, just it's hot and I've been doing physical labor, like digging clay, making bricks and such.  For the most part I'm healthy, don't worry about the fever, it was less than a 24hr bug.  The medical coverage for us is awesome, so no worries.  I haven't got a camel yet, that's on the back burner right now, I just got my bike today.  I do want to start rabbits here if they'll work.  They could use the easy meat, and could sell the pelts.  And I like rabbits.  My cat's name is Lefty, the name it came with, and the donkey's name is Don Quixote.  The Kitten doesn't have a name yet, but it's going to a friend, so I'll let them name it.

I guess that's all I've got for now, I might add tomorrow, if I get the chance.