Monday, May 4, 2009


I know it's been awhile since I wrote, so, apologies. Plus I don't have any pictures today, so...apologies again.

I spent Easter here with my host family in Porto Novo and it was really nice to see them all, but 48 hours was definitely all I could take. It is interesting to see how far I've come in Benin since in September I didn't want to even leave Porto Novo at all and after one weekend with them now I was very ready to get back to Dogbo. Maman had matching dresses made in meme tissu for us and Papa a shirt in the same tissu too so we looked really cute.

Recent happenings in Dogbo...a new expat arrived. She is french and a nurse at the hospital but I still haven't met her since I have been traveling to and from post so much since the beginning of March. The French family (Doctor and Teacher in Dogbo) is heading back to France at the end of June since their 2 years are up. I met a Japanese volunteer when I was at Easter in Porto Novo and she has two other Japanese friends in Dogbo as well. It was one of those small world in Benin moments because she lives across the street from my host family and knows Carie who also lives in Porto Novo so we were thinking maybe sometime they could arrange a trip up to Dogbo together.

I'm also inheriting a bunch of bonnes choses recently, which is nice since I'm of a rather foul disposition as of late and getting new things seems to make it feel ever so slightly less depressing. Chalk up that mindset to growing up in a culture of rampant American materialism. Everyone is leaving. Pretty much all of the training group ahead of me is leaving early. They were all due to leave at the end of the summer but most of them will all be out of country by June or early July now since no one wants to stick around after Kate. My closest friend in country made the really hard decision to go home as well. It just got to a point where she needed to go home, and as much as I support her in her decision, it is really upsetting. I am getting the fridge that doesn't really actually work too well from a PCV that was posted in Azove nearby and is flying out tonight. Also the dutch couple in Dogbo gave me this old couch that they didn't want anymore (and when I say couch I mean an old wooden bench with a back on it that reminds me sort of like something that would be sitting outside a ski lodge...god, i miss skiing). Since it was a little beaten up and dirty I decided to refinish it and have a cushion made for it. This required a trip to my hardware boutique again where everyone thought i was crazy once again for buying sandpaper, varnish, and paintbrushes to do the work myself instead of hiring a menusier to do it. Well it looks pretty good, menusier be damned, and I will take a picture of it for next time. And Carie gave me her coffee press and spices before she left, which which was very nice of her ;).

I just finished up a 2 week stint in Cotonou and Porto Novo for more training, world malaria day, and programming session for the upcoming summer training (i have to help out 2 weeks in August training new stagieres). I also just got my grant application approved for GAD (remember that post about the GAD dinner and how it raises money for small projects like this)so I am starting a newsletter for the schools in DOgbo about relationships and sexual health. Wish me luck. Anyway, realize this was sort of anticlimatic but I'll be in Dogbo for most of may and make a sincere effort to be better about posting. Home in less than a month...can't wait.


PCMother said...

It sounds as if you are doing a great many productive things. I wish Carie could have had the same experience. You have definitely provided great support to her and I know how much she will miss you. May the next few weeks fly by so you soon you are having a great vacation.
Carie's Mom

Aunt Loretta said...

Ahh my darling niece … How great it was to click on your Blog Spot this morning and see an update! I’ve been having withdrawals. How sad to hear that your predecessors are packing up and heading out. Does that mean that the new regime will be invading earlier? That was lovely that your host family had you for Easter and even provided you with a homemade ensemble! They truly love you …. Although how could they not love you!!!!! I can’t believe you’ll be home in 29 days … I get all teary eyed just thinking about it and about being able to hug you up close and personal!!!!! I recently got in touch with some cousins I have not been in touch with in over 30 years and had to brag about you. I gave them your Blog site and one of them sent me an email back to tell my how amazing she thought you were …. Of course, I could not help but agree with her! Any how, I now it’s difficult saying good bye to the friends you’ve made, but continue to be strong and know that in 29 days you’ll be home with Family and we can’t wait to see you! Love you to the moon and back again …………… Aunt Loretta

C Leigh said...

soooo embarrassing. well you just have 3 weeks left!!! I'll be waiting to email and swop photos with you and of course... i'll be waiting for the latest dirt.. so you better have some for me. i face-booked you. write back soon.