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Thunder! It's grey and ominous and thundering outside. Fantastic! It poured rain yesterday for a few hours. On the tin roof it drowned out all other noises. It was the first real rain here since... probably November? The real rainy season isn't supposed to start until April, but I am not complaining about a little cool-off.


Coffee. Cake for breakfast. Yum. Market day. Irritating guys I choose to ignore. Nice ladies in the market. Carrots, celery, onions, garlic, piment, potatoes, pineapples, limes. Kids I recognize say hi on the way home. Taxes online - confusing with two W-2s, the Peace Corps one is incomplete, my bank is different... I spent 2 and a half hours working on them only to have the browser crash! Aaaah! Luckily the website had saved what I had done and my taxes are filed! I didn't file state tax (again) because they owe me a refund of $25 and it cost $27.95 to file through the same website as free federal tax filing. Anyway, federal refund, too! Yay. Made my favorite lentil recipe here... oh gosh it is tasty and makes me feel like I am home (in Humboldt) and it is healthy. I also made some more hot sauce with piment and vinegar and garlic. Washed carrots and celery and put them in the fridge. Today, so far.


When I went to Bafoussam, walking from the gare to the town center, there were a couple roadblocks up. I wasn't entirely surprised, I figured that they were just out to make an extra buck. A little further up the road, I see a row of rifle pyramids stretching into the distance. On the side of the road is bunches and bunches of military. There is no way to walk past the rifles without half of them pointing at you. Guns make me really uncomfortable. More uncomfortable than the military guys shouting, "La blanche," and "Ma cherie".

HOWEVER, there were two soldiers walking hand in hand and laughing about something with big smiles on their faces. Reminder: homosexuality is illegal in Cameroon (not technically anymore, but definitely culturally) and hand-holding between men is way okay. But... gosh, America, please let people be openly gay in the military!!! It is real cute! (Alright, there're more serious issues involved in the debate, this was merely my rambly train of thought).

I found out later that all the soldiers were there for the installation of the new Governor of Bafoussam. Who knew? Not me! Or Wendy, who is expecting 20,000 books very soon that the last governor told her he would provide storage and guards for. Plans, who needs 'em?

I ate lunch in Baf while I waited for the Supermarché to open again (they close for lunch). While I was sitting eating my Banane Tapé (unripe bananas deep-fried, smashed and deep fried again) and drinking my Schweppes Ginger, men came pouring out of the bar across the street. Two men are fighting. The shirtless one smashes his bottle on the cement and another man picks him up around his shoulder and between his legs and carries him into an alley to break up the fight. People gather in a semi-circle and watch the mediation, and I leave. It's 2 o'clock.

After the supermarket (no cheese, I spent all my money at the tailor) I get in a car to Batie. There are cockroaches living in this car. Crawling on me. Gross. I peg my pants so they can't crawl up my pants. They were crawling ON my pants, after I peg them, they crawl on my bare ankles. Gross.

In Batie I go with Wendy to observe the business class she is teaching. She is way rad, which is impressive with a class of 30-ish. It is interesting seeing things start to make sense to people. She does an exercise where the class adds up how much a beer and cigarettes and PMUC (lottery) costs over the course of a year. Enough to buy two motos! Some people are very impressed. There are a lot of people here who find money for a beer or two every day, yet think they don't have enough money to do X with. Logic pervades, but there are those who think that life without beer is not really living.

Delicious food made this week: Hummus, falafel, pita, peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies, eggplant/greek olive pizza, cheesy squash pasta, one-egg cake with chocolate sauce.... I'm not the only volunteer who cooks way more than they ever did in the states. I think it's a combination of massive amounts of free time and a longing for home-food.

All for now. Love!!!