I know you guys loved the last time I did this when we lived in M adang…So without further ado…here are some ways you can relate to us in bush orientation!
*We live in a house that is about 380 sq. feet in size. It’s a little small for a family of 5, but it works for us and has been good bonding time!
*We have a kitchen, table and chairs, bathroom (with a bathtub!), a couch that folds into a bed (ours), and a room divided with a curtain where all 3 kids sleep!
*Our fridge stopped working the 3rd day we got here, but we can use the other missionaries’.
*We have tried to train our kids to be really quiet when they wake up, so they don’t wake the others up. So when they wake up, they climb into our bed. Now our bed is a little smaller than a double bed…so every morning, we have 4 people in our bed!! Cozy!!
*We have found that we did not pack enough warm clothes at night. It is FREEZING! At least we are learning this now, so we can prepare for our own tribe.
*WE use a twin tub washer to wash our clothes. It’s a combination of the old days of washing and wringing out your clothes, and the modern days where we have automatic. Now most of you won’t be able to relate to this, but we hang our clothes up on the line to dry! Most days, it gets cloudy by noon and our clothes don’t dry.
*We have a working toilet, but there is a saying to conserve water: “If it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown, flush it down!
Now for some other things about this culture:
*Kakaruk- This is the pidgin word for rooster. Most of you are like us and thought that roosters crow as the sun comes up. That’s true, but they also crow alllll the time…especially when our kids are sleeping. So they come right outside our window and crow at 4 in the morning forever! And then they crow during our kids’ nap! One time, BJ picked up a rock and was about to “toss” it over in the general direction of the rooster. Then, the owner came over to talk to BJ and was telling him that was his rooster. BJ slyly put the rock behind his back!!
*Do you remember what “susu” is in pidgin? Well, women nurse their kids all the time, and they don’t use coverups! Any time their kids come to them, they nurse them. It has become just a normal thing…almost.
*The people here wash in the rivers, creeks, or waterfall. It’s a little different than M adang, because they could immerse in the ocean. So they are a little dirtier here!
*People grow their food in gardens, which consist of sweet potato, taro, pumpkins, and greens. They are so nice and bring us food all the time! And you cannot throw it away, or it’s offensive! So we give it to the kids or I have a friend who said I could secretly give it to her if I don’t want it!
*Last thing, we have to hike everywhere. The terrain is very hilly here. It’s quite beautiful! We had to hike 30 minutes to a friend’s house the other night in the rain. We also have to hike there and back to church…30 minutes…and I assure you…it’s up hill both ways!
We can find “entertaining” things about everywhere we have lived, but overall, we felt right at home. The house was a little stretching to live in for a month, but we are so thankful that the Goud’s (click here for their website!) let us come in and intrude! After bush orientation, some people realize that they don’t want to do tribal missions anymore…so we are thrilled that we are even more excited about moving forward in prayerfully choosing a tribe to allocate in!