Thursday, September 8, 2011

My Daily Life


Week 2 of training is almost done wahoo! The past two days we’ve had four hour language sessions in the morning which has been ridiculous. That coupled with medical, cultural, and technical trainings in the afternoon has been SO much information I feel like my head might explode. I have no idea how I’m going to get all these manuals to my site, my bags were pretty full already when I got here. It’s all good though, because its surprising how quickly I can see the language training making a difference in terms of understanding bits and pieces of what my host family says to each other.

On that note, I moved in with a host family exactly a week ago whoa! I won’t go into details, but adjusting to a homestay has been a rather difficult transition for me. This is due to a whole host of reasons, but now that I’ve been here a week I think I’ve better adjusted my expectations of this particular experience, and I will hold off on describing too much of the dynamic here for a while. Let’s go over my day-to-day schedule instead!

6:15 I wake up (horror!)
6:45 Leave the house and walk to my neighborhood’s pick-up spot. Though getting up when it’s still dark is not my thing, watching the sunrise is pretty darn beautiful as there is an amazing view of Namibian mountains on my walk – I’m trying to get a good picture of it to show you all! Also now that school is in session lots of kids are on the way to the primary school I walk past, and seeing them reminds me why I’m here after all!
7:20 Get to the training center, chill for a bit until the person with the keys arrives
7:30 SONGS!!! This is a great part of the day, when we sing Namibian songs! Then we sing the Namibian national anthem, followed by the American anthem, which I also enjoy, though the Namibian anthem is then in my head for most of the day.

8:00 Sessions begin. Generally we have language in the morning. My trainer’s name is Aunty Martha, and she is the most adorable old woman EVER. She sometimes gets us to remember things by singing as well, for example this week we learned “it is lovely to meet you volunteer” to the tune of “She’ll be coming round the mountain when she comes,” and how to greet people and say good night to that of “Oh my darling Clementine.” Awesome.
10:00 TEA BREAK. aka without a doubt my favorite part of the day
10:30 We have more sessions with a lunch break between them, and then all of a sudden it’s 5:00!
Afterwards, sometimes we will go for a “koeldrank,” and then take our 45 minute walk home, which is nice, others we just go straight back to my neighborhood in a suburb of town – suburbs here are called “locations.”

When I get home, I try to spend time with the host fam, sometimes with mixed results. At 6:30 their favorite soapie 7 de Laan comes on, and I hate to say it, but I’ve kind of gotten into it. In fact, I’m just a little sad that a birthday celebration is going to make me miss tomorrow’s episode – this Rick guy has gone seriously crazy, and just drugged his ex-girlfriend to sleep [she said she didn’t want to get back with him], and is about to set her apartment on fire!!! Luckily, I’m sure someone will be able to fill me in, phew.

9:30 Sweet bed.

Thanks to everyone who’s sent emails/messages so far, I’ve really appreciated them and love hearing from you!! I will respond eventually, I am just so so exhausted when I get back, and have been trying to conserve the megabytes (like I understand how that works) on my internet stick. When I can get the internet on my phone to start working I can’t wait to chat with everyone – obviously my phone is malfunctioning, some things will never change.

For now, I will leave you with a sentence that my class came up with after 4 hours [too many!] of Afrikaans class:
Hy sal volgende jaar mense eet.
Translation: He will eat people next year.
Somehow the food session today turned to cannibalism…  good times.


  1. Claire,

    Wow! Your Dad sent me the link to your blog. What an adventure!

    And a very noble and self-less commitment to help people.

    Please keep blogging and sharing your experiences.

    Best Regards,

    Lee Raesly

  2. Dudette:

    I thought the only cannibals in Africa were animals like me. That's really scary...

    The King.