Thursday, December 20, 2007

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year( Hope you have lots of time to read!)

18.12.07 Tuesday
Below (6.12.07) is the post that i was so upset that i lost last time. But if you don't want to read it don't bother because it may not be too exciting. But anyway... i am now a Peace Corps Volunteer! Finally! After 10 weeks of my darling homestay family and living like a 12 year old again, i am very happy to be living on my own. Well kind of on my own... i have an awesome roommate named carrie who is from Charleston, south Carolina and she rocks. She is a huge fan of phase 10, honestly how could we not get along. Our house is great. It is actually nicer than the lovely little place i called home in vermillion.(I just took a little break from writing to fix the lock on the back door, this might be one of my proudest moments in Mozambique to date- I just fixed a lock!) Sorry if this is a lot of stuff that I have told you about before. But our house is in a teacher sort of compound. We are about a 2 min walk from the school and there are 12 teacher houses set up in a town house sort of fashion. Our yard and driveway are fenced in and we have 2 gates that lock, well one locks and the other is broken, but no big deal. Good thing we have a drive way that way when I get all sorts of visitors who rent cars they have a place to park the car at night :) but I have a living/dining room with a table and 6 chairs, a couch , 2 chairs, a book shelf and coffee table. In the kitchen we have a stove fridge, pantry, and sink. The bathroom has a BIG mirror(the largest I have seen since leaving America), shower, toilet and sink. My room has a huge closet, bunk beds and a small dresser. I just said today that I think that this place would be the perfect place for me in America My school is amazing. All of the rooms have desks, chalkboards,and ceiling fans.there is also a computer lab,and chem/bio/physics labs. The directors are all very nice, and I am really looking forward 2 the next two years. I have made 2 new friends. Simba and Tembo, they are students at the school and lived with the volunteer who was here before us. They are 18 and 19 and amazing. They help us with yard work and for the first few days went to the market with us to be sure that we were not getting muzungo( the word for white in the local language) prices. The most important thing to mention is that I saw a monkey in the wild. It was probably about 100 yards away, but it was amazing. I have also become more domesticated than I had ever imagined possible. I can now make a wonderful mango salsa that rivals my mothers homemade salsa (sorry mom, I guess you will just have to come visit to see for yourself ;) to go with the lovely salsa I can also make homemade tortillas and tortilla chips. Other amazing food that we have made includes spaghetti, curry and nan, and yogurt. One night we also make chicken strips (from a frozen chicken that we had to cut apart ourselves, a big accomplishment for both of us), but we ate them with real ketchup! I am so excited to get gas for the oven because as soon as we can bake the possibilities will be endless! The one down side to this house(sorry I have ADD and cant put this in any sort of order) that there is a HUGE bug problem. Lots and lots and lots of bugs, so I am glad that I got over that fear during homestay. I have also decided that the whole idea of those princess net things is crap, the only reason that you should sleep under a net is for protection from icky nasty bugs. The other night I woke up because there was a bug crawling on my leg( and yes I was under my mosquito net). But the beauty of this place makes up for the bugs. Hopefully there will be pictures accompanying this, but being that I am pre-typing this I am not sure if it will work or not. We are surrounded by mountains and they are amazing. It rains almost everyday, but that is the reason for the amazing lush greeness of the area so I will not complain. I love it here, so hopefully it will keep up for the next 2 years. I can not believe that it is almost christmas. I try and tell people here how cold it is at home and they think that I am struggling with portuguese because there is no way that it can really be that cold. That will be it for now. I hope that I am not boring you all to death. I love and miss you all. Once again thanks for all the thoughts and mail! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you. I am still working on figuring out something for mail.
6.12.07 Thursday
So I hope everyone has a lot of time to read...I woke up at 4.30 this morning and i have nothing to do, and now that i have my computer i can write my blog entries at home... it is going to be long. Tomorrow is swearing in-when i actually become a real volunteer and not a trainee. I am really excited. Then on Saturday I leave for Catandica, the place that i will call home for the next 2 years. I don't even really know what has happened since the last post. We had one more week of model school and thankfully that is over. I loved teaching but no so much being observed by my colleagues all the time. This past Monday and Tuesday we had a supervisors conference where we got to meet the director of our school. He seems like a really cool guy, but i am kind of worried because when we had question and answer sessions he was the one who was always asking why volunteers cant work more hours and why cant volunteers teach night classes, so that makes me a bit nervous. This conference was the most boring thing ever,and it was done in all Portuguese so it was pretty exhausting to be translating things for myself all. They served us lunch each day, and let me tell you buffet style eating is not a talent here. The concept of a line is out of the question, at first i got really angry about it, but then as we started talking about it it made sense. These people were raised with the mentality that if you don't eat now and get your fair share it might not be there 5 min from now. After i realized that i was a little less angry. The last session of the conference we were given the opportunity to write down questions that we didn't feel comfortable asking, and you would not believe how many of the questions were about volunteers marrying Mozambicans or volunteers being in relationships with directors or volunteers having children here. It was crazy. We are scheduled to get to our site on Sunday, and when we told the director he asked us if we wanted to start work on Monday. (We don't have to start until January when school starts) Peace Corps said that if we don't want to do it that this is the perfect time to start practicing the wonderful word NO! Apparently the school will ask you to do just about anything and at first a lot of people struggle to say no, but we said no, so hopefully they wont ask again for a while. Oh ya last Saturday we had a homestay celebration. It was basically just a party to say thank you to the families that took us in for the past 10 weeks. There was so much food and so many people it was pretty fun. We also got capula (the wrap sort of thing that the women always wear) from our families, and it was really cute. I guess i really don't know what else is going on except that i am so very excited to go to site!
i think that i should have a new mailing address in the next couple weeks, so as soon as we get our post office box set up i will let you know! I love and miss you all!
and for my darling family in cali:i got 2 of the packages yesterday...THANK YOU! I can not wait to eat ketchup(real stuff that doesn't taste like sweet and sour sauce)

26.11.07 Monday
Wow I am so excited! I am sitting at my homestay house on my computer and I can actually type correctly and not struggle. What an amazing day!On Friday night I went to the preschool graduation with my sister and it was so cute. All of these 4 and 5 year old kids singing and dancing. Saturday all of the peace corps volunteers had this huge thanksgiving feast and it was amazing. I have not eaten so much good food in one sitting since I was in America. It was really fun, and it almost didn’t feel like I was half way across the world. On Sunday I had my hair braided. Now I am not so sure that I want to shave my head because I kind of look like a man with my hair braided….but I guess I will just wait and see what the future has to hold. Model school is annoying because it is supposed to help prepare us for what school is really going to be like, but that is kind of a joke because like there is anyway that we will ever have a class with only 10 students, every teachers dream right? When I got home on Friday night I discovered that my 2 year bag had been dropped off(hence why I now have my computer) and I was ecstatic! But I realized that so much of what I brought was a total waste of weight. I can get toothpaste and soap here. Some stuff like school supplies I am really glad that I brought, but I feel like a lot of it was a waste. But I wont complain that I have it. Getting some more clothes was like Christmas a month early. I can not even imagine how sick of my clothes I am going to be by the end of two years, thank goodness for used clothing markets. Who ever would have guessed that goodwill(or worse yet…clothes that even goodwill couldn’t sell) would be the highlight of my week? So I love and miss everyone and I hope that everything is going well on the home front. Like I said I think that internet at my site is going to be kind of rare so this may be my last post for a while. So if I don’t get to the internet again before Christmas…Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. If anyone can figure out how to do the 315 area code thing through google I can call you for free so jump on it! Hugs and kisses
Linds J

Thursday, December 6, 2007


so i had this amazing post pretyped and now i cant get it to open. so not to many details. but i am alive and i swear in tomorrow. i am ~going to be a real volunteer now, not just a trainee. going to catandica...sorry for the spelling error. hopefully i can get the other update back and post it . i am still loving life... i hope all is well

zoey grams gramps doug and boys...thanks for the packages..i got 2 of them so we will just see if the other two come. i cant wait to eat real and miss you all

linds :)
this picture was taken on my site visit. these kids love cameras!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

hello everyone! back again and i am so excited. i am going to be teaching english in a place called catandinca. the school was just bulit 2 years ago by the world bank, as was the house that i will be living in so they are some of the nicest in mozambique. i am pretty sure that i just quit the peace corps and joined the posh corps, i am going to have running water, electricty, ceiling fans, a fridge and a stove. there are also computers at the school but not internet. so i am thinking that after i leave homestay that internet will be about a once a month thing. so expect raelly long pretyped updates in the months to come! ummm not exactly peace corps in my mind but i am not going to complain about it. i am going to be living with a girl named carrie who i believe is from south carolina. i can not wait to see the looks of confusion from people in town because carrie and i both have blonde hair and blue eyes and people here have trouble telling me apart from someone with dark skin and dark hair. i am sure people are going to be realy confused. but i am really excited about my site placement and i am really looking forward to the next 2 years. other news... thanks for the mail...but as much as i hate to say it...put a hold on it for now because i will be leaving for site in a few weeks and i prolbably wont get stuff for a while. but i will have a new address when i get to site, i just have to get a post office box set up. other random stories from the past few days - i was outside studyign the other day and my 4 year old brother came out naked so i told him to goput some clothes on, but he thought it was a much better idea to go crap in the yard. yep he just squated down and pooped right in the yard. nice and healthy huh? people in this country love to dance! i have been going to all these things called xtikis lately- they are parties where one person gets all these gifts..i dont really get the whole concept but hey cool for hte ladies that get the gifts. but they randomly burst out in song and dance all the time and i love it. i can not wait to pick up these mad dance skills. at the last xtiki that i went to this lady asked if i have a boyfriend you know the rest of the drill....but this time she thought that the only logical reason that i was not attatched was because i was a sister in the church and it took me forever to convice her otherwise. i am also becoming a master at washing clothes by hand honestly who needs a washing machine. this past week was the first week of modle school. we are teaching classes that are supposed to seem real but it really doesnt work taht way because sometimes there are 4 kids and sometimes tehre are 13, but in a real class it will be closer to 40-60. so not very realistic but oh well. i made apple sauce the other day and it was amazing, and my family loved it which blew my mind! last silly story but the other day this guy told me that my hair is beautiful like sugar. didnt know that sugar was beautiful but hey whatever works for them. i love and miss you all. eat lots and lots of good food today. i will eat some tasty rice and think of mashed potatoes gravey turkey and cranberry sauce. hugs and kisses
linds :)

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Wasting time

So i have spent way too much time on the internet this week. but i am done with the whole host family thing. i love my family here to death, but really i am 23 and not 14. but everything is still going well... i am just ready to get out on my own. we have model school next scary. we have to get up in front of a class and actually teach! i am extremely nervous, but very excited at the same time. during the first week i will teach 2 9th grade english classes, and the 2nd week i will teach either 11th or 12th grade. it is really hard to figure out what to teach because my brother is in 9th grade and doesnt even know the english alphabet. kind of crazy isnt it? if any of my darling teacher friends out there have any suggestions for fun activities with mininal(really minimal) resources it would be greatly appreciated. i just came to the realization not too long ago that my family must not use toilet paper when i am not living with them. the toilet paper has been gone for a few days and it doesnt seem like a big deal to anyone.thank goodness that i have a secret stash in my room. i find out for sure on wednesday where i am going to be living for the next 2 years! i am really excited but really nervous at the same time. so many exciting things going on. right now. only 3 more weeks of homestay and then i am off to my site! that is al for now. i will probably be back on wednesday...either bawling or screaming with excitment! hopefully it is the latter
hugs and kisses!
linds :)

Sunday, November 11, 2007


back again! i just got home from my site visit yesterday and now i can not wait for site placement. i went to tete province to a city called moatize and loved it. alyssa(another pct) and i stayed with this guy named bak and loved it. it seemed really crazy when we got there because he lives on the third story of an apartment buliding...not exactly what i picture when i think of the peace corps, but hey it was cool. we wentto visit current volunteers to get a better idea of what life might be like when we are actually out there on our own. it was weird to have so much freedom for 5 days. i didnt have a knock on my door to wake me up, i didnt have to bathe 2 times a day if i didnt want to and i could eat when i wanted. there was so much less structure than here at homestay it was amazming. anyway...moatize is a city of about10000 people located outside of tete city(the provinical capital) the city was really cool and of course the people were really funny. all of bak's neighbours kept asking if we were his wives and one of the girls who is 11 would not believe that we were just visiting. we basically just did a lot of hangingout. the first night i spoke portuguese for about 3 hours with these men who work at the mozambique/malawi border, and that was the extent of my portuguese for the past 5 days, and i felt like i couldnt even speak portuguese last night.... kind of a problem. the weather was HOT!! people basically dont do anything from 11-3 because the heat is pretty unbearable. one of the professors at the school told me that it was one of the hottest weeks of the entire year. one of the days we hiked to the top of this mountain in a thunderstorm, probably not the best idea, but it was really cool. everyone thought we were crazy because we were just walking around in the poruing rain, but it was really fun. after our little hike we went to this shop to have a beer and it ended up being a huge dance party. we were trying to take pictures of these kids and they were going nuts. they LOVE to have their photos taken. i also learned to passada. it is a traditional mozambiquan dance...not that hard, but it was really fun. these women were trying to teach me how to dance like a mozambiquan but it just was not happening. even 3 year old children can move thier bodies like nobodys business. we also visited another site at zoube which was a little more rural, and i am not sure that i want to be placed somewhere like that, but the girls that lived there had a really cute house. we spent friday night in tete city which was amazing! the girl that lives in tete city has a place with air conditioning and running water. it was crazy. we went out to dinner at this great resturant and then went to this brazilian guys house and went swimming. tete provice has a bad rap...but i kind of want to get placed there, but i am not sure that i could handle the heat. i also have a newfound love of season is in full swing here and i love it. i have a lot more that i could write alot more but only one computer is working and there are a ton of people waiting to use the comptuters...more later!
love and miss you all!
linds :)

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Devil´s Layer

hello again! i feel like i am on the computer way more than i should be...oops! when i talked about thread the other day i meant embrodiary(or however you spell it) to make bracelets. i had a language test on friday, but it didnt go so hot. i know that i can speak much better portuguese than i did during my interview...but oh well i guess i still have 5 more weeks to learn. the other day one of my cousins came over for dinner and she told me that i need to eat more because i am not a fat american and that i need to get more fat like my sister melita, and she said this right infront of my sister. i thought it seemed really odd, but i guess here it is not a big deal. for all of you that are doubting that i will come back single...think again! i dont think that i could ever be an african wife. there is no man who will tell me what i can and cant do :) so next week we go on site visits. basically we go and stay with a current volunteer for a week to get a better idea of what service will be like. i am going to tete province...hence why my blog is titled devils layer. the guy that i am staying with said that right now it is about 105 in the sun. ohhh my gosh i think that i am going to die~, but at least this way i will have grounds for telling the peace corps why i dont want to be stationed there. i am also very haopy to inform all of you that i have gotten over my fear of mice, cockroaches,and spiders. well not totally but i dont scream when i see them anymore, and if i see a spider on the wall i just let him be. that way he can kill all of the mosquitos that want to give me malaria. i feel like everything i write is so random. and then after i leave the internet cafe i think of all of the important stuff. did i mentoion that last weekend this lady here told me that i could sell my hair here fo $200 us dollars. she mentioned that darma do bling would buy it. darma do blig is this huge time rap supestar here, she is actaully pretty good, but funny that my family wants me to sell my hair to her. i am pretty excited to start teaching. i have actually been preparing for my lessons lately, and the students get really excited, i know that this will be an exception in the classroom, but if even 5 kids want to learn that will totally make my day.
love and miss you all...hopefully i have a good report when i retun next week.
other things i wouldnt mind having
word~search books
red nail polish or any color(you were right mom...i miss it)
star chart of the souther hemisphere
reading books
world map
hooks to make earrings
a batter charger( mom if you unpack any of my stuff i think i have one), cause i blew up the other one.
dry soup mix
powdered drink mix
an ac adaotor for my ipod

Monday, October 29, 2007

hello all!

hello everyone! all is well here in mozambique! whats new.... i have started teaching some english classes at the secondary school, not real classes, but between 7 and 12 students who want some extra practice. it is really cool but really imtimidating at the same time, i never realized that being a teacher would be so hard. what is more weird is that most of the students are my age or older and they call me o senhora professora which is a sign of respect both in and out of the classroom. this past week was interesting i thought that i had a really good week for portuguese and we had a mock lang interview on friday and the guy told me that i need to increase my vocabulary and work on past tense verb forms. so much for me thinking that i had a good week, but i heard today that he told everyone the same thing, so we are kind of thinking that it might just be a scare tactic. this past weekend was the 6 month ceremony for the father of my house having passed away and it was a huge learning experience. friday i watched the head of a cow be cut all nasty to eat and i watched a goat be slaughtered. i think about 30 people slept in my house on friday, and i felt like a huge snot as a lounged all alone on my full size bed and huge room while everyone else was cramped elsewhere in the house, but i am not nearly comfortable enough to offer to let someone else sleep in my room. saturday morning a caravan of 10 cars went to the cemetary and there was a ceremony in the local language. a lot of singing and talking that i did nto understand. everyone present placed flowers on the grave and then family members sprinkled watet over the grave, not sure the significance of that. afterwards we returned to the house and everyoned washed their hands before going in the yard, once again not sure of the significance. the men all sat on chairs and the women sat to the side on straw mats and a prayer was said and then we all ate. i was a veg for the weekend because i was not about to eat cow head, goat head, or chicken innards. after eating the men all drank wine and beer and the women sat and talked. i asked why the women dont drink and one of the men said that it is because their husbands say they cant. but for some reason i was allowed to drink, but i have been told before that american women in mozambique are not really women but they are not really men, somehwere in between. i spoke a ton of portuguese and learned a lot but it was frustrating to speak to all these people who are not used to dealing with me and my horrible portuguese. other than that not much is new. i guess i got another marriage proposal on friday when i went to the bar with my brother to buy some beers. it is amazing how many people here speak english. really makes it hard to learn portuguese. i have been telling people that i cant speak english, so they dont really know where i am from. i guess that is really it for now. love and miss you all!
linds :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

1 Month!

ok well not really one month, but it has been one month since i left home, saturday will be one month in Mozambique! so just a bunch of random stories from the week past. one day my sisters friend came over and she was asking me if i know how to cook and do lanundry and i said no i am learning, but i said that i do know how to iron. and she then told me that i was never going to get married in mozambique. ok i didnt plan on getting married here. no you wont even get a boyfriend if you cant cook and do laundry. by the end of the conversation i was laughing really hard. what was more funny was that the next day a cousin came over and told me that he loved me and that i would make such a beautiful wife and mother. the tactfulness of mozambiquan men. saturday a bunch of volunteers got together and made french toast..ohhh it was amazing! i just learned the other day that they do pay as you go electricity here. people go to some shop and buy credit and then come home and punch the numbers on a reader to get electrictity. kind of crazy. i also went to church for the first time on sunday. it was in portuguese and shanganna( i dont know how you spell that but it is the local language). last night i atteneded an english is going to be very interesting to have my own class. the teacher was handing back final exams, and he called each student up in front of the class and then told them their final exam results. if people did poorly he told them so in front of the class... so much different from what i am used to. after he finished the results i introduced myself and the class asked me some questions. the first question was wether or not i am married. and it was followed by my age. i declined to answer either just because i didnt want to deal with more stupid comments. this week is going well so far. my class has a new portuguese professor and i think that things will work out well. i am still not learning as fast as i would like to, but there is not much that i can do. i always feel like i should stay home and study, but it seems so much more beneficial to go out in the community and be social with the people. i learn a lot more quickly that way , but what i learn is not what i am being tested on. oh the dilemma. if anyone wants to send me some string that would be cool. like the kind that you use to make friendship bracelts in 7th grade. and maybe some chewing gum because i love it. that is all that i have for now. my next post might be pretty interesting because my host moms entire family is coming this weekend and from what i am understanding i am going to spend the day at church on friday and at the cemetary saturday followed by some party. it is looking to be an interesting week ahead! take care! love and miss everyone!
linds :)
not sure if i mentioned this earlier, but many men here have more than one wife. we had a presentation earlier today done by a current voluntter and he told us that he had a conversation with a chapa driver and this was his justification for men having more than one wife. there are more women in mozmabique than men, and women can not take care of themselves, so it is a mans social duty to take care of a woman, and if he has the money to take care of more than one he should.... interesting isnt it?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

back again!

whoa back again in just two days...but today was a short day for class so hey why not. so after i left a post on sunday i was so lucky to go to the salon with my sister again...i tried explaining to them that it is silly for me to get my hair done because it doenst last, but they dont seem to care and still want me to get my hair done. i really dislike going to the salon because i feel like a grease monkey afterward. my hair honestly looks like i just got out of the shower,but my family thinks that it looks so pretty. so what do you do? dad this one is totally for you...good thing we cant have visitors during training... on sunday i was doing the dishes with my mom and the soap in the sink was gone so she went into the bathroom and got the soap from the tub. yep you got it, they use the same soap for dishes body and clothes! tasty isnt it! today my portuguese class made lunch for our moms, interesting trying to come up with an american meal in mozambique. our first idea was hamburgers and plan b was blts, both of which fell through because we cant get ground beef or bacon. we ended up making fancy grilled cheese with tomato onion and lettuce and onion rings. the moms were impressed, and it was tasty. what a wonderful day. but i do have a sweet battle wound... a blister on my pinky from hot oil. we cooked at my friend jesses house and he has 2 year old twin sisters who i am in love with! they are the cutest kids. i was holding one of them and the mom told me to take her back to america...and she was not kidding. it is crazy. i really dont have much else to say now! take care
linds :)

did i ever mention that i shower 2 times a day... i thought that i was going to shower every few days...but no my mom makes me shower every morning and night. crazy!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Galinha (thats chickens in portuguese)

So i dont know how to stay roosters in portuguese, but that is how you say chickens. i pretty much have grown to hate roosters with my entire being in the last 2 weeks. i kid you not they start crowing at 4am- honestly roosters give a girl a break. but other than the roosters i am still loving it here. as hard as it is to beleive that it can be cold in africa it has been muito frio lately. like cold enough to wear jeans sweatshirts and socks, not at all what i was expecting for africa, but then again i am about 5 min from the border of swaziland, so we are pretty far south. the last week has been somewhat uneventful, but i have learned to do my wash by hand and how to cook some local dishes. both of which take considerably more time than they do in the states, but i am going to be one heck of a domesticated woman when i return. we cooked this dish called couvey. it is made from the leaves on some plant, but it takes almost 3 hours to cook. first you have to smash peanuts and then cut the leaves and then grind coconuts and then let it all cook. these mozambiquan women are seriously amazing, i dont know how they do it everyday.ohh before i forget, thanks for the phonecalls and comments, it is a really great feeling to know that people care. i miss you all! and mackenzie figured out the country code and left it as a comment, so if you want to call she put up a bunch of info as a comment on the last post. last week after dinner i was clearing off the table and as i was walking to the kitchen a mouse ran across the floor and i freaked, then 10 min later i went use the bathroom, and i got the door shut and looked up and the mouse was on teh door frame, and i couldnt get the door open because it sticks really bad so i was screamning like a mad woman,and my mom about had a heartattack because she couldnt figure out why i was screaming. now they make fun of me all the time because i am scared of mice. yesterday a bunch of us volunteers went to this waterfall about 6 km away. i am sure that during the rainy season it is really cool, but do to the lack of water, there was no waterfall, but the area was still really cool, so it was still worht the time it took to get there. not sure if i said this last time but my village is called namaacha, not sure if there is anything online but it might be worth a try.after the waterfall trip we went and watched a couple games at the local soccer field with proved to be really entertaining. another thing i learned this week was that the father of my family recently passed away. my mother wears all black and my sisters wear a black ribbon on their shirts. i found it ratehr interesting how they mourn. unlike the states it is not accepted to cry in public after a week or so. i cant really think of what else has been going on.i miss you all and hopefully i will be able to get back on again in the next week or so. ohh ya i stupidly put my camera cord in my other bag, so i will not be able to upload ny pictures until december. keep in touch!
linds :)

Saturday, October 6, 2007


so i have way more time than i thought... my mobile number is 826279082 but i have no idea what the country code, and the internet is too slow for me to want to look it up. but if someone wants to look it up and call me that would be cool. i think that i am 8 hours ahead of central time. so more about where i am living. it is a village of about 9000 people and i will be here for the next 9 weeks. we have language and cross cultural training everyday. it is pretty cool. my host family consists of a mother, 2 daughters, 1 grandaughter (all of whom are close to me in age) and a grandson who is 4 and he is the best porgutuese teacher ever. he follows me everywhere and cries if he cant sit next to me at dinner. .. its cute. my house is a mansion compared to most of the other volunteers. i have a kitchen and bathroom that are both in the house. and my bathroom has a bathtub(no running water to it though) and a flushing toilet. i never would have thought that i would enjoy bucket baths so much. basically it is a a big pail of water and you bathe yourself by pouring it over you cup by cup. sory this is so scater brained and not organized. food is awesome. lots of rice and south beach here. but i cant believe that they can cook so much good food from scratch, but it is all tasty. they are severly lacking in the peanut butter department though. ohh ya so i took my first chapa ride today. a chapa is kind of like a minibus but you cram 19 people into a space made for about 12, but it is less than $2 for an hour ride...not to mention they dont have shocks and people dont want to open windows is life in africa, but it is great


Hi Everyone! Sorry it has taken me so long to get in touch- we are on a field trip to Maputo now so we are spending a little time in an internet cafe. i arrived in Mozambique last tuesday after a super long flight from philly. but the flight was good and my fellow peace corps volunteers are amazing, so it was alright. mozambique is absolutly amazing! i moved in with my host family on sunday...things are starting to get better. the first few days were really rough because i could hardly communicate , but with 5 hours of language class a day things are getting much better! i have learned a ton of portuguese the past week, but i still dont feel like i am learning fast enough. last night i helped my sister cook dinner...she must think i am a total idiot, but i told her that i never cook in the us, and then she thought i was really crazy. i also went to the salon with my host sister yesterday. she had the lady to my hair in curlers...i guess that she didn realize that my hair wont stay... but it was cute for hte few hours that lasted....
umm i dont know what else to say, i am a bit homesick, but i love this place...the people are amazing and so is the food. everday i walk about 10 min to my portuguese class and i laugh so hard because little kids will chase me yelling white in portuguese, and when they catch up to me they laugh because i talk to them in portuguese. i hope that everything is well at home. i miss you all terribly! love you!

linds :)

Sunday, September 23, 2007


hey everyone just wanted to let you know that i made it safely to philly. i am having a lot of fun so far and i have met a ton of really cool people. i hope all is well. i miss everyone already :)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

so now i am really starting to stress... 5 days to go( why am i wasting time on here?) i have packed and repacked my bags about eight hundred times and i am struggling to make this 80 pound weight limit. ohh did i mention before that we have to pack everything we need into 2 bages weighing no more than 80 pounds. it seems easy, but really its tough. i feel so shallow because i am sure many things that i am bringing as necessities are probably luxuries for other people...ohh goodness. but beyond the packing everything is good. i am getting so excited to leave, but at the same time i am finally beginning to realize that this is really 2 years. back to the packing. hope everyone is writing lots of letters :P

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Important Information (well kinda )

So this is the really important making me feel special by getting letters in the post! From September until mid-December of 2007 my address will be

Lindsay Songstad,PCT
Peace Corps
C.P. 4398
Maputo, Mozambique

Make sure that you write "Air Mail" and " Par Avion" on anything that you might send. If you get really ambitious and think that you might write more than one letter, please be sure and number them because rumor has it that the postal service is not extremely reliable. I have also heard that writing in red ink, and writing God Bless, Teaching Materials, or drawing crosses on the packing has helped other volunteers receive more complte packages. I am hoping to get a mobile phone when i get there, but obviously i dont have the number yet. I know that calling overseas direct can get really expensive, but there is this thing called Skype. It is free to download, and using it you can call Mozambique for somewhere around $0.16/min. Not the cheapest rates out there, but much less expensive than calling directly.

At this point i am really excited/nervous. As much reading as i have done i feel like i should know what to expect, but i really have no idea. it seems like everyone has a different experience,but all volunteers seem to love moz, so that is reassuring. i am most nervous about learning portuguese, but i guess when you are thrown into a situation where you have no choice but to learn the language, you either sink or swim. although i have been trying to study portuguese, i dont think i have been making much progress, but i am trying right? well i think that might be all for now. 6 weeks and counting :D

Friday, July 27, 2007


So I am pretty new to this blogging thing, but I figured that this might be easier than sending out a mass email, and I have heard that internet service in Mozambique is rather slow, so i figured that this would be a better option. But for those of you that have not heard i am going to Mozambique September 25th to teach English at a secondary school and i am extremely excited! After I leave I am not sure how often i will be able to update this, but i will do my best to keep everyone informed as to what is going on. Take care and wish me luck!