I’m sitting here writing this blog on my first night in my new house. I just got here from a day out of site. I have the time to write right now because I have to wait for my bathroom to air out. I have to wait for it to air out because I let loose an insecticide bomb of epic proportions in there. There was a MASSIVE spider in the shower. Now, I had encountered this kind of spider before, so I know they are fast and they don’t go down easy. I had to have my host mom kill one for me a couple weeks ago. These things are easily as big as my hand. First she tried to convince me that, “the spider won’t trouble you Kate.” I was like, “Nah girl, it’s troubling me. Big time.” She tried to kill it with Bop (the bug spray), but honestly, with the little spurts she was shooting at it, she would have been more likely to kill me than that behemoth. It kept running away every time she would spray it. She ended up having to beat it with my yoga mat. Anyway, when I saw one of these in my shower tonight, I knew I was going to have to come in hot. So I got my gigantic can of Bop and decided that I could sneak up on it and take it down. I held my breath and unleashed the fires of arachnid hell. The spider didn’t move. The spider was already dead. So now I am sitting here in my dining room waiting for the back half of the house to stop being poisonous. Food for thought: Why does it always seem to happen that creepy-crawlies are encountered while naked?
I successfully took a shower, but do not possess the strength of will to remove the spider body. I don’t possess the strength of will to even brush my hair. Which is probably a nice sight for my neighbors. They are noticing that the lights are on in here and call for me to come out onto my balcony to say hi. I don’t think they expect the wild eyed, wild haired lady that comes out. The kids are asking me if they can come in. Haha. No. That’s not happening tonight. It’s 7:23 and I’m going to drink my precious blue Gatorade, eat some cookies and go to bed. Speaking of bed, I managed to only bring twin sheets, and I have a full size bed…
I thought I would absolutely love living alone. I have looked forward to it since I was a little kid. I would think about how much I would love to have my own space, and not have to worry about being bothered. I have never been so wrong about anything in my life. Last night and today have been the toughest for me in a very long time. I don’t like being alone in the house. I keep wishing that I had someone else here.
I think I really am going to have to get a dog. We aren’t supposed to have dogs in the house, but I think I can keep one on my balcony and create some sort of dog run behind the house. I don’t like this whole “alone with my thoughts” thing. That’s fine for a little while, but I’m really not that interesting. It’s also a bit scary to be the only one here. I had to call another PCV last night because I felt so lonely. She has been in her house for a while and says it gets better once you settle in a bit.
I have spent all of today cleaning. I washed every dish in the kitchen, and cleaned out all the cockroaches from the cupboards using heavy doses of Bop. I unpacked my suitcases (finally) and put all my clothes away. I also hung up my hammock on the balcony. I am realizing that I still have a lot of essentials that I need to buy. They will have to wait until I can go into the capital next weekend. That’s another hard thing, to get almost anything, I have to take a bus/van into the capital and carry whatever I buy back on my lap.
As you can tell, I am feeling very sorry for myself right now. I have so far managed to have a pretty positive attitude about things, and I still know that things will get better, but I am definitely having a moment. I think slowing down and being alone makes me miss everyone even more. To counterbalance the negativity, let me write about some of the things I am looking forward to…
- School starts tomorrow. I have already met the other teachers, and I really like them. There are quite a few that are close to my age, which is nice. I am also looking forward to meeting the kids. I have met a few here and there in the village, but I’m excited to meet them in a school setting. I am going to spend the first month or so observing since I haven’t really seen how a Caribbean school functions yet.
- I get Wi-Fi tomorrow. Kind of pathetic, I know, but this will put me back in touch with my family and friends, which is exciting. It’s also really really nice to zone out with some Netflix once in a while.
- I get to cook in my kitchen. Everyone I have lived with has been really good at/enjoyed cooking. For this reason, I have rarely gotten the opportunity to cook anything more than quesadillas. I am excited to experiment a little and hopefully have dome people over to try my experiments. I also bought a blender, so I can make smoothies with all the wonderful fruit here.
- I get to decorate. I brought some stuff to decorate with me, like a couple tapestries and a California flag. I also plan on getting some Christmas lights to hang up to brighten up the house. There are a few bare bulbs here and there, but I thing it will be nice to add some softer lights. I also want to make some shelves and put indoor plants around. I’ll also have to get some area rugs since I have cheap vinyl floors that have rough seams, which I keep tripping over. I don’t have a couch, but I do have an extra bed frame, so I am going buy a mattress for that and turn it into a couch of sorts with cushions.
- Getting an animal. Whether it be a dog, like I mentioned earlier, or a cat, it will be good to have another creature in here with me. I am a very strong believer that having animals prolongs your life.
Actually, just writing that list makes me feel better already.
15 September, 2015
I’m sitting in my house writing this bit about a week and a half after I wrote the previous text. I am feeling SO much better. I almost wanted to scrap what I wrote before due to the general negativity. However, part of the reason I wrote this blog is because I want to give an honest portrait of my experience. I always liked those blogs best when I was trying to decide whether or not to join the Peace Corps.
So yes, much better. I have to say that I was pretty pathetic with feeding myself this first week. It’s so time consuming to get groceries that I ended up with only those I could carry on my lap on that first Saturday. About 90% of my meals were peanut butter and honey sandwiches. As you can imagine, this didn’t make me feel too great. This week, I’ve made a concerted effort to eat some more nutritious food. I have chicken in the oven now, which is my first attempt at domesticity. There are a couple of vans that pass by every day that sell fresh bread for $1 EC per loaf, which is nice. I won’t starve.
I entertained myself by reading and listening to lots of NPR. I’ve probably listened to every Fresh Air podcast on iTunes (which I downloaded with the Wi-Fi in school). As of yesterday, I am hooked up to Wi-Fi in my house. This is very comforting, because it connects me with my friends and family again, whom I was missing pretty intensely. It’s very weird to feel like I’ve reverted back to feeling like a little kid who misses her parents. It made me so happy to talk to them last night.
For now, I am content. I am feeling more grateful that I have a relaxing place to go to after school is over. I will talk about school in another post, but suffice it to say that I really need quiet time after the bell rings at 3.
I can’t really post pictures of the outside of my house for security reasons, but if you know me and want some, let me know, and I will email them.
The other two bedrooms are pretty much empty.