It's Saturday morning. I feel asleep on the sofa last night after a really long week at work and finally managed to get a full 8 hours of sleep! Of course, the pounding rain probably helped.
My HHE arrived and now I'm surrounded by boxes. A sea of boxes that I must navigate for the days to come. A word to the wise...travel light. I have 90 pieces of furniture/boxes total; for one person. I remember in Kenya where each person owned a coffee cup, a fork, and a blanket. Sure made moving a lot easier. I have really really enjoyed having my own bed again. And soft sheets! The welcome kit gives us sheets made of scratchy hardness. I forgot what it's like to lay on soft sheets! It was nice to see the antique coat rack, but they lost the little metal pans that go on the bottom for the umbrella holders. Hope they turn up. It seems strange seeing my white love seat in my living room in Africa. Seems almost a guilty pleasure to have it travel all this way. I'm planning to have a lot of fun unwrapping the kitchen things. I really want to find my Polish pottery and my china. I have never had a china cabinet before. Leave it up to me to base taking a new job on the notion that it comes with a free china cabinet! But I'll also be happy to see my wine glasses again. I am sick and tired of drinking wine out of beverage glasses! I'm going to start a list right now of things I want with me in my UAB (unaccompanied air baggage) for my next move. FS allows us 250 lbs of items they ship immediately to our next assignment. Topping the list will be: soft sheets, wine glasses, and 2 of my own towels!
Some of you have asked for photos. This is difficult for two reasons. One-I feel uncomfortable photographing people here. It's strange to snap a picture of someones life. I mean, it's not a novelty for them to be living in poverty. It's a novelty for me to take a picture of it. I'm trying to get over that so I can show you what it's like here, but it's not easy for me. It reminds me that I'm at the top of the class system here and that's uncomfortable for me. Two-even if I take the picture, downloading it takes so long that the computer usually crashes. Slow inernet connection here. (hey, I'm just happy they have internet and cell phone service, since they don't have running water or electricity!) So, in light of this, I found a web site that has some beautiful photos of the beaches here in Sierra Leone. I spend a lot of time at Bureh Town beach with friends. It looks exactly like the photos. Our cottage is right across the water from the island in the photo, so what you are looking at is the exact view we have from the veranda of the house. The first beach I went to was Lakka and it's also very serene; no people at all while we were there. River no. 2 (what a strange name!) is a little more busy; they even have people who will take your drink order and bring you a cocktail under a beach umbrella. Lumley beach is the beach in Freetown proper. That's the beach I run on. It looks exactly like that, and the sunsets are really amazing. I can see the beach from my apartment patio and watch the sunsets at night. It's about a 12 minute drive from my apartment to the beach. Now that I have the car, I hope to run there 4-5 times a week. Here is the link:
So, it's back to unpacking for me. Hope everything is well in your corner of the world!