I Have a Place to Call my Own

My house project was actually successful. To update you again, my house is a brown oval wood building with two small rooms inside. It has two doors that are directly across from each other for the best cross wind effect and it has four windows. The youth showed up at about 7:30 in the morning and we got to work We emptied out all the garbage that had accumulated over the years and lit a huge bon fire in my front yard. There is no efficient way of disposing of trash here so the best answer that the Tongans have come up with is to burn it. Now environmentally speaking this is probably not the best way, but it sure is fun to watch suitcases and mildewed books turn into smoke.

The youth worked for several days and my house is definitely livable. It's actually pretty cute. My main room is painted blue (the top half is light blue and the bottom half is dark blue). This living room/kitchen has a mini-stove and mini-fridge for my cooking needs. I bought a little metal book shelf for odds and ends and I have a woven mat in the middle of the floor. I have no running water so I use my neighbor's sima vai (cement rain water tank) for drinking water. I also use my neighbor's outhouse and shower house, which is on the other side of their house (a decent little walk in the middle of the night). Those both have running water, as long as the main water pump is running. I haven’t figured out a schedule, but the water pump gets turned off at least once a day for several hours. When that happens I just take a bucket bath.

My bedroom is quaint. I have yellow walls and a huge wooden (bootleg) bed that my youth worked so hard to make. I have a "mattress" that does not quite fit the frame and a mosquito net that reminds me that I'm in the Pacific Islands. I have a rope strung between my walls for my clothes on hangers and another metal shelf for the rest of my clothes. I have yet to see the pig fence be built, but I'm in no immediate danger. I have tamed them with my scrap food.
Overall it is the perfect little Tongan house.

Other news:
I went spear fishing. Basically I went out snorkeling with a spear and attempted to catch anything I could get the blade into. I was unsuccessful, but had a great time trying. The guys I was with were a bit more experienced so we had a great picnic on the beach.

At one of my feasts in Okoa, I ate something that did not quit settle too well in my stomach. It was either the raw fish or the roasted pig, but I spent my first night in my new home on my hands and knees over a bucket. I also had to make a mad dash across my yard and over a pig fence to make it to my neighbor's bathroom just in time. I ended up making a "MOM, I'm sick" call that freaked my parents out a little. Sorry about that guys.

I'm keeping busy and loving my new freedom.
Hope everyone is doing the same.


At 7:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so happy you're finally in your own place! It sounds cozy - I can't wait to see pictures. Love, Kirstin

At 8:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Adrianne, I love reading your posts. I'm glad you're feeling better! I hope your new house is a blessing and you can "smile" more. It sounds like you're doing a great work there in Tonga.
We sure miss you here on the soccer field. We've only won 1 game this session. But players come and go, so the team changes each session. I'm glad you're able to play there. You have great skill and add lots fun to the game! Best wishes, Rhonda Asher

At 2:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hooray!! You have a home! There's nothing so lovely as one's own nest. We love keeping up with your posts. Pig fence????? Love, Jeanne in Davis

At 4:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Adrienne,

I'm so thrilled to read all about your adventures and see the beautiful pictures. My daughter Jessica was in your trainig group, so you can understand how happy I was to find a few pictures of her and the other PCV's. It make me feel that much closer to her and all of her new friends. Take care!
Jessica's Mom from Maine


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