La Americana Brava and her Uninvited Guests
Trip Start Feb 14, 2006
41Trip End Apr 06, 2008
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I am here in the capital and thought I would take advantage of the free internet connection in the Peace Corps office to do a quick update. I officially moved into my new house last saturday and am loving having my own space. It is BIG news in my campo that the americana is living alone, since that simply isn't done in Dominican culture. Usually, if a dona is widowed and all of her children have moved away, they will send a grandchild to live with her so she won't have to be alone. Within families, people often share beds even if there is enough space for everyone to have their own just because they don't like to sleep alone. Needless to say, my community is confused/concerned about my new living situation, but I really enjoy it. I have had a few people tell me that I am "guapa" or "brava" to live alone, which roughly translate to bold or brave. I have yet to purchase a machete for self-defense if need be, but it is on my new house shopping list :)
So, to explain the title of this entry, since moving in I have had some pleasant and some not-so-pleasant surprises. In the pleasant category, the dona who lives next door likes to bring me hot chocolate in the morning and there are two guava trees outside of my front door. In the unpleasant category, I have many uninvited guests in the form of critters and vermin who were comfortably settled in my house and don't seem to be inclined to move out. There is the frog who lives in my bathroom, the giant palm-sized spider (thankfully not hairy) who hangs out in my closet, the fire ants who live in the couch, and the rats who scamper along the rafters at night. I put out a buffet of animal feed spiked with rat poison but so far they haven't taken the bait. I was thinking of mixing in some peanut butter to see if I can entice them to eat the poison. I suppose I should be thankful that I don't have to worry about large predators or venomous creatures(i.e. lions, cobras, etc). But so far, all is well and I am happy to be in my own home. Stay tuned for pictures coming soon!