Wednesday, May 16, 2012
There is a veranda off the side of our bedroom that was built with these decorative concrete blocks that are open to see outside but you are kind of hidden. I stood there sinning for quite some time the other day. I was coveting the neighbors plants. There is a certain vine or bush, I am not sure which, that grows here that I love but for weeks no one could tell me where to buy it. I stood there admiring the beautiful bright pink one in this neighbors yard as he was on a ladder trimming and pruning. And then a terrible thing happened. I had also been hiding because this certain veranda is a dead spot where for some reason no one thinks to look when calling for me. I had been laughing every time one of our children went by yelling my name searching for me which they did with increasing loudness every few seconds. I don't feel even slightly bad about it because Andrew was right there playing ball with Albert and he was completely capable of telling them to stop tattling for the 100th time of the day. I even ate cookies while doing it. And to my utter dismay, they found me. That is not, however, the worst thing that has happened. In the last three weeks the electricity has only worked for 2 evenings. It came on at night and went off by the time we woke up. Guma(the water system) has not been flowing for over a week now. We have run out of both reserve barrels and Andrew, Albert and John spent Sunday morning filling buckets at a different tap and bringing them to the barrel just to try to have enough to wash ourselves and the dishes. The laundry is becoming a problem because all of our sheets and towels are dirty and Isatu is out of undies. Then, something happened with our ground wire and current was coming into the house so if you touched anything metal it would shock you. Sometimes it would be really strong. That can be alarming. Therefore, we have not been using the generator regularly. Even if that weren't an issue there is a fuel 'crisis' as they call it where there the gas stations run out of fuel. So we have had to be conservative with the generator. The lack of consistent cooling in our refrigerator caused some meats to go bad which was expensive. And our kitchen smelled horrible for a day. Next, Levi and Ivey got a crazy rash and we put creams on it but nothing worked so we finally took them to the doctor. It turns out they are having a reaction to the malaria medication and have infections in their intestines. The rashes are gone, Levi is back to normal and Ivey is close to being back to normal so no one should worry. We actually were surprised to find out they were sick because they never acted unusual or told us they were hurting. Also, we couldn't go to River #2 for our family day on Saturday because the car's 4 wheel drive isn't working and it makes a terrible noise when you turn a certain direction so it was in the shop. So, we went today instead and terror of all terrors the beach was filthy. It is usually so clean and beautiful but today there was trash everywhere. We inquired of the british man named Freddy that we just met and he said that according to gossip, when the rains come-which they have- that all the trash flows off the river banks and it all floods to the ocean. NNNNNOOOOOO!!!! We have mixed emotions about the rains. On one hand it gets so beautiful here when all the plants are blooming and green and we love the cooler weather. The downside is that besides the mentioned trash ruining my day of escape, there are termites, mosquitos, ants and all kinds of crazy bugs swarming right now. The termites are so annoying! They will fly right into your face. While I am giving the list I'll go ahead and make it complete by saying that on top of everything else our internet stick isn't working. I am typing this on Tuesday night but who knows when I'll post it. I am supposed to be ordering things for the container, and e-mailing our friends list and all kinds of things but with no way to charge the computer and no internet stick that is proving to be quite the problem. As I was typing this the electricity came on and about 20 minutes later the lights started doing the dreaded wave of dimming and brightening but this one was different. There was some clicking and I went to turn off some of the outlets. I was standing there debating turning it off at the wall switch so that it didn't blow anything out when flashes of lights happened outside. I ran out on the front porch and all down the street the light poles where flashing and shooting sparks. It looked like fireworks. Then it was only one. The one that is right outside our gate in front of the compound next to ours. It kept it up for a good 30 seconds and finally the last sparks shot. Andrew had joined me for the last part of that and we ran next door through our shared gate to see if Mr. Brama was ok. He was. He said they need to trim the trees and that the wires touched. So I came back in and started to type this when the electricity went off in one last definitive swoop. A guy who does landscaping came and we bought two of the vines I love for a grand total of $6, the electrician came and we think that the current leak is fixed now, all four of our fuel barrels for the generator are full, the refrigerator is cleaned out, the car will be fixed soon and Levi and Ivey are better. So we are fine but please pray for the electricity and water specifically. After several weeks it is getting tiring and the longer it goes on the harder it is to deal with. Fortunately, we get our drinking water from the store so the water shortage is not affecting that. The washing of ourselves, dishes and laundry is the issue. God has blessed me with a terrible sense of smell so I am not suffering yet but the stink is mounting. Andrew on the other hand has a great sense of smell so it is fortunate also that God has allowed me to always smell like roses. That's probably how my kids found me on the veranda.