Cameroon / Life / Peace Corps

Au village: A Normal Day

Au village:A Normal Day

I woke up, destined to find Martiale and to finish up business in town to get his dossier started up at the lycee. After boiling water, eating oatmeal and knocking out the buckets of dishes with Yune on the porch, I was on my way on my way to find Martiale. But I stopped in my curiosity about the noticeably large amounts of blood on the side of the road. The Anglophone that lives there was standing around as others cut apart animal bones and tendons of a goat, among other body fluids exposed, that I learned they had killed just that morning- a tradition to celebrate/mourn death. His mother had passed away 9 days before, and they were to kill a goat and feast that day to properly say goodbye. Too bad you do not have a camera, so you could show your family the traditions here, he told me. As much as you would have loved photos, I’m sure, you will have to do with out them. Martiale and I continued on into town to where one must make an official request or demande to enroll a student into school. A worker wrote out the letter for me since there was so much protocol I did not understand how to do. We paid and waited. I pulled out the English textbook and showed Martiale. He learned the numbers. Two goats ended up running into the establishment, but were quickly thrown out by one of the office workers. We finally finished up business, so we walked back to the carrefour where the cars leave to Nkongsamba. I was shoved into the front, between the stick shift and the other front passenger (always thankful for the extra padding on my butt!) After a few minutes, we rolled out, stopping for other passengers along the way. We arrived in Nkongsamba, where I was to go to the bank and internet café. I scurried across the busy streets, full of motos- many of them inviting me to ride with them, many of them knowing that I live in Bare even. But I didn’t make it to the cyber. Instead I was called out to by an acquaintance from the Parthenon, a bakery/white man store that is located just on the strip. We had a juice and a Malta, as I was feeling open to forming bonds with people at that minute, and would have felt guilty if I had chosen cyber over integrating- although this was just at the moment, because I thought it may be a good idea to make this friend. It was nice, talking to an educated man with many hopes and dreams, which gave me a bit more insight to the country. A couple hours later, I walked into the cyber which was full. My mom is going to kill me if I don’t get some photos or blog up soon! I was thinking, but computers were taken and I was persuaded to go to Tim’s house to take a shower. Why his house? Did you see the word “shower” first off? Secondly, but so much more importantly…he has an instant hot water heater! So my herbal essences and I made the walk to his house, for hummus and shower. It was very much worth it. I went to the bank and tried the cyber afterward, but the connection was up and down and I was only able to send off about three attachments. Ashia. Next time, Mom. This is Africa. Finally, I was once more tempted by my American cultural roots. I dodged into the bakery to get some Gouda cheese. Sometimes you just have to because you can! I was quickly hauled into a cab afterward, back to village, where I made the evening walk back to the house. Yune had just made some pasta with salmon, an added bonus to a wonderful day. A klonk klonk klonk on the veranda barrier from Martiale and he welcomed me back home… you’re back from Nkongsamba. Yes, I am back home.

About Tara

Tara received her degree in French and Communications before jetting off to serve Cameroon for 2 years with the Peace Corps. She has forever since been inspired to serve in humanitarian projects around the world. She's a writer, tour guide, business owner, property manager, wifey, dog mom, and traveler. Tara lives in Dallas, Texas, where she's happily married to the tech genius who keeps her website pretty.