So, today (Wednesday August 15) is a national holiday, so we have the day off. It’s the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. This country makes sure that the most important Catholic, Muslim, and local holidays are all national holidays, so we get the maximum amount of holidays we can. After two crazy stressful days at work, I can really appreciate this!
I’m fortunate that I have a mentor at work who can explain how much of this stuff runs. He’s been there for almost two years, so he’ll also be leaving soon, but he’s a wealth of information about the country, the embassy, and the work.
In terms of lifestyle, the biggest change is that there is something we are expected to do almost every evening! We’ve had cocktails, receptions, dinners, and today a barbeque. We haven’t yet had a single night to just chill out at home. It’s good, because there’s not that much to do at home yet (we haven’t received our UAB or internet yet), but it’s very tiring too.
We’ve also explored our neighborhood some more, and found a fruit vendor we like. Fruit here is fairly cheap. We got a pineapple, 6 apples, shallots, a large bunch of tiny bananas, dried plantains, and a scotch bottle full of peanuts for 4000 CFA ($8). I’m sure that if we left the foreigners’ neighborhood we could get it cheaper, but I was happy with the price we paid.
For those interested, the traveling Kitty seems to be adjusting well, though he’s gotten more lovey since we’ve gotten here. The extra space is good for him, we think, if only because he’s walking more and thus getting much more exercise.
I’m going to work with the Teacher soon to get some pictures of our house and our grounds (within the limits of security, of course!). That way, we can show you what I’m talking about.