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(More) New Beginnings

July 13, 2011

Our house comes with kids!

Pinch me. This morning I packed my backpack, slipped into my lapa suit, and walked to Doe Palace to catch our taxi to Nimba county. What a trip! Six of us (driver, Matt, Krista, me, and our principals) squeezed into a station wagon that quickly turned into a roller coaster with luggage. Up down left right. Repeat. It started when our driver had to buy gas, before we even left Kakata. Five or six men swarmed around the car, one holding a giant Blue Plate jar of gas, another a funnel with a tube and the others rocking the car to help it go in.

Then we were off and as the car picked up speed Matt’s principal turned back to us with a laugh and asked if we knew what a potato road was. We shook our heads and, with a laugh, he replied, “They call it a ‘potato road’ because dey pleeenty holes. Up down. Up down.” This seemed silly until our car was careening across it, swerving around oncoming traffic, goats, and crater-sized potholes. A stop to buy an entire bunch of bananas was welcome respite… until a spider crawled out and into the backseat with us!

It quickly became clear just what “bush” means. The longer we drove the greener and taller everything got. Amazing. Like driving through an issue of National Geographic for six hours. As we left Ghanta the mountains appeared and I could hardly believe what I was looking at. This is like nothing I’ve known, familiar only through pictures. How do I know this is real?

Our house is huge. Bright blue, next to the pump, already with children in the yard. They have street lights (yes, you read that correctly!) and it has a surreal small town America feel. Trees line the center of the main road by the school and there are even recognizable sidewalks! It’s crazy. I think I can see myself here. I understand why Vince called it “The Denver of Liberia.”

Tonight a cool breeze blew as the sun set and the fire flies rose out of the grass. I could hardly believe I was in Africa. The challenges are huge – we are the only female teachers, I am the only math teacher – but the framework and potential are promising. Sanniquielle, I look forward to learning more of your secrets. I feel welcomed home.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Andrea permalink
    July 31, 2011 12:29 pm

    I LOVE reading your blog! I love the way you decribe things so well 🙂 I’m sure you will be such a blessing to the people there and I look forward to reading more of your adventures.
    Love you!

  2. July 31, 2011 2:20 pm

    We think of you often on your adventure. Am loving your blog and glad you are keeping us in the loop! Much love, Carol and Linda

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