Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Kunywa or Kunwa

Written Sunday, June 27, 2010

Alright, it is time for the post that is practically mandatory for all Peace Corps Trainees…..a report on choos and poo. As my digestive system grows accustomed to the local foods and weather, I have realized how very lucky I am to have my own choo attached to my room.

First I should start by saying that my big African weight loss plan has been thrown a curve ball. People in TZ eat even less healthy than people in America! We only thought the down home style cooks of the South fried everything. They could even learn a few things from the locals here. Plus, it is not uncommon to sit down to a meal with rice, potatoes and pasta!

And I was completely serious when I said in the last post that the family mama expects everyone to eat. The first night was extremely hot and I could not eat much without a drink. So when I first tried to ease out of the situation by saying “Ninanymbasheba” or I am full, she was like NO eat more.

So it was no big surprise when the second night was spent mostly in the choo. What was a surprise was that with the mama’s room right next to mine, she could hear me each time I had to get up and would yell through the wall “jess-KA, you ok?”. Not exactly a situation where you are wanting to yell the play-by-play through a wall to someone you already have limited vocabulary.

Otherwise the choo situation has not been too bad. For those who may not know, a choo is basically a hole in the ground into which you use the bathroom. During the day my group meets at a local government building and we use the choo of one of the other PCTs who lives almost next door. This one is a more typical choo being outside the house and shared by the whole family. It is in a small brick outhouse-type structure with a thatch roof. It is also where you take bucket baths.

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