samedi 30 juin 2007

My Host Family

I live in the third largest city in Burkina Faso -- Ouahigouya ( from now on just "OHG") -- and my house is just a few blocks away from the training center for peace corps. All the people here live in a courtyard style set-up. So, behind one courtyard wall there may be anywhere between one and four houses. Usually the extended families live in separate houses in the same courtyard etc. I live with what must be an upper-middle class family. Actually, its pretty ridiculous how much my family has compared to some of the other volunteers staying in villages or further out in OHG. Okay, so my family has electricity, which means i get to sleep with a fan every night -- its the most awesome thing ever! Also, we have a TV and a satellite dish in the courtyard so we get like 20 channels. Hahaha. I know it sounds pretty ridiculous. The TV is turned on constantly -- i mean my siblings here make American kids look like they play in the park all the time. I watch a lot of dubbed spanish soap operas and TV5 France. Also, we have a refrigerator and a freezer -- these my mom uses to freeze the juices she sells.

Our house is the only one in the courtyard. Most of the volunteers in OHG have their own small room apart from the main house but my is inside next to the living room. So, there is a straw roofed "porch" in the front and then you walk in the front door and you are in the living room. This room is about the size of my kitchen at home. Off of the living room are two short hallways and a door. The door leads to my room at the back of the small living room. One of the hallways doubles as a kitchen and leads to the back part of the courtyard. The other hallway gives access to my parents room, the room all three kids share, and the indoor shower. Both of these rooms are about the size of my bedroom at home -- definately smaller than my dorm room in new south. The indoor shower is a small tiled room with a drain in the floor for your bucket shower. All of the rooms have lights -- this is also atypical of the majority of the volunteers home stay experience. Another cool thing is that we have a water pump right in my courtyard -- most people have to carry all their water to their house. Not me!

I live with a family of five. My dad, Abou, teaches math. He is the most outgoing member of my family and he likes to make me use my french. None of my family speakes more than 5 words of english. My mom, Amie, is my favorite. She cooks me all kinds of good food and makes sure I am always comfortable. Shes real sweet and she works really hard. Everytime she makes a new beverage she gives me a little with filtered water. Bissap is definately my favorite. Her french is a little harder for me to understand -- Africans talk really fast. I have three siblings. The oldest, Raicha, is 12. She helps with all the house work. She is really shy. My middle brother, Chaquie, is 10 and hangs out with his friends all day. He is really shy as far as Im concerned. The youngest, Papice, is 2 and he is super precious. He comes in my room just to stare at me. He is mostly just fascinated by my foreign-ess.

In the back of the house is the latrine. It has no door and no roof. I really dont mind the latrine at all. Okay, so thats my situation with the host family. I am sure I left something out but thats all for now.

3 commentaires:

Nana a dit…

I love your descriptive ways. Tell your family that your grandmother Nana sends her thanks for taking such good care of my Becca.

Patti Hedges a dit…

Paul was right! Your blogs read like a good book. How can I obtain the book rights to your story? :)
Or even the movie rights?? You're living a wonderful adventure. I hope you are keeping a journal of your thoughts and experiences that are too personal for a blog site. That would help when you and I get ready to write your book.
Kinda seriously, who knows?!

Molly a dit…

I'd stare at you, too. Did Mom tell you she tried to send you something except that it cost like 500 dollars? She said she needed to "regroup" on it. Too bad you put all of your money in that CD. You could be livin' the high life with all that cheap Beerkina!