Friday, 21 May 2010

I have moved house - again!

I have moved to my permanant address today! Two hours later than planned - but I am in Africa - at least the day was right. I was collected by 3 men in a pick up truck with all my stuff bundled into the back. Enroute we encountered a march through the street of primary school children complete with a brass band! The temperature that registered on some religous icon on the dashboard of the pick up truck said 46c - wow it felt like it too.
We went over some really rough terrain to get to my new accomodation. I don't even know the address of where I am living - I suppose it is over the back of the Midwifery School by the trees, pink house within a compound - that is walled with big metal security gates with coiled barbed wire all the way round.
The house is so much better than the previous temporary house - a distinct lack of cockroaches, no loud music that resonates through the walls, no constant smell of mariujana - which makes me feel sick!
I set to work cleaning the kitchen and bathroom to a standard that I can live with - it took all day - but I feel for the first time I can cook here.
I made a cup of 'instant' coffee - boiled the water in the shiny new kettle after I had put the gas connections together without blowing myself up!
There is limited furniture - I'm still living out of suitcases until a wardrobe arrives! There is a promise of some sort of bench/table in the kitchen to prepare food on and place the 2 burner hob on safely!
There is no electricty here but a need for a generator to pump water from the well into the storage tank - needless to say the water tank is nearly empty and I was looking forward to a day of washing clothes (by hand of course!) - but I will have to save the water for showers - as it is just so hot, damp and sweaty here.
I have bought a couple of small battery operated lanterns and have candles - that is my power supply. I can charge up my laptop, toothbrush and phone at the school - but only on week days - so if I use my computer too much - I am then without the outside world!
Tomorrow I will go to the market and buy some food stuffs now that I can cook on the 2 burner gas hob. I have got an African cookbook - all beans and rice - but it is very tasty stuff.
Who knows what I will eat tomorrow.
I worked in the Government Hospital Antenatal Clinic this week - I will tell you about this in another installment.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Alice,

    Your blog certainly brings back memories of healthcare in West Africa! I was a VSO midwife in a village health centre in Guinea-Bissau from 1991 to 1993 and managed health programmes (GOAL and SCUK), at district level, in Kailahun SL from Sept 2004 to April 2007. I found that most aspects of healthcare in SL were as I had found them in Guinea Bissau decade earlier (probably a lot to do with the war).It will indeed be a challenge-Good Luck