Well, I’ve certainly been busy for the past few days. Last week, the whole of Grade 11 was out of lessons so that Mr Panday could do maths stuff with them, much to my disgruntlement. The students and Rosie had to report for duty at normal time and stay at school until late from Wednesday to Saturday, so poor Rosie only got one day of her weekend.
On Sunday, we moved into the Teachers Quarters. Rosie spent the morning cleaning and scrubbing whilst I supervised some dorms boys as they carried our boxes and furniture between the two houses. The boys were hilarious, especially when they were trying to carry our huge wardrobe across the hill, up the stairs and into the house without dropping it or letting the door swing open. They were surprisingly successful, though the whole event was one which involved plenty of shouting, yelling, cheering and cackling whenever someone accidentally walked into a wall. Our kitchen table was moved in a similar fashion, and the volume of the boys as they argued over how to get the very large item of furniture though our rather small door woke up R.Ed.O, who was asleep next door.
We got everything in eventually and slowly started to unpack. It’s Wednesday now, and we still haven’t finished sorting everything out though.
The house is an upstairs house, made of wood. There is an identical house joined to the left, and two uncompleted concrete apartments below. The kitchen is tiny, but there is a large living space which we’ll get some hammocks slung up in once we get some long pieces of rope. There is no ceiling, only the roof, which is made of corrugated zinc sheets and rattles quite loudly in the wind. None of the louvres in the windows are broken, so we have much more privacy than in our old house, and because we are upstairs, children can’t peek through the windows and watch us working (thankfully, because it’s very off putting).
There is no running water though, so all water must be carried in buckets over the airstrip from the creek. I’ve also taken to bathing at the creek now to save water, despite the fact that the water doesn’t even cover my feet in most places. We also discovered yesterday that the toilet leaks violently when you flush it, and everything doesn’t go down. So now we can’t use our toilet and, as none of the doors on the nearby longdrops close, we have to break into the house next door (currently unoccupied) to go to the loo.
Contractors were staying in the houses downstairs until recently, so the whole area is a mess of broken bits of wood and rusted, semi-burnt bits of metal. The area at the bottom of the stairs is virtually a swamp because the gutters are broken, so yesterday after school I used some planks to make a crude decking area and a platform for our water barrel.
Anyway, life is still fantastic, even if it is more difficult now. To be honest, carrying water is no problem because it’ll make me stronger, and the toilet situation (whilst being insanely inconvenient) is actually pretty funny … especially when we’re climbing over the roof in our school clothes at lunchtime just to go for a pee and someone spots us. So if you’re worried about me, stop it now!
Lots of love,