In picture: My lunch today at school. The best school lunch I’ve ever had. Amazingly flavored boneless fish, French fries, brown onion sauce, a tomato slice and a piece of lettuce (quite a treat), and of course, bread. I didn’t eat that whole basket of bread, but my plate was licked clean.
Dakar, Senegal – Tuesday, February 3, 2015
7:45am First alarm goes off.
7:54am Second alarm; check to see if Wifi is working. If yes, quickly check Facebook and email for important messages. This morning, and yesterday, our power was out so I couldn’t.
8:02am Get out of bed; get ready for the day. Put on pants, shirt, and sweatshirt. Mornings are chilly. Go potty, flush. Brush teeth while tank refills and flush again. I almost never can get the toilet paper down in one flush.
8:20am Quickly eat breakfast – a baguette, a piece of cheese, and hot tea if there’s time. Take malaria pill. Today I left a little late because my mom had new mango jelly she wanted me to try, and Saliou wanted to play with me for a little bit.
8:28am Head to school; walk quickly. Stop and have a quick chat with anyone you know, or “know” in many cases. Most days I run into my neighbor, Laye, and we hug and chat.
8:59am Arrive to school.
9:04am French class starts.
11:01am French ends. We have a one hour break. Sometimes I will spend this time walking to the Toubab/white person store. It’s essentially a small grocery store. Today I finished up some homework and checked my email/Facebook instead.
11:59am Wolof class starts. This is by far my favorite class.
2:00pm Wolof class ends. We have another one hour break. Again, what I do varies. Some days I will buy ice cream and sit near the beach and eat it. Today I ordered and ate lunch at school with my friends. We drink ataaya (tea), after.
3:05pm Education & Literacy class starts.
6:01pm Done with school for the day; start walking home. Today I stopped at a fruit stand and bought clementines.
6:35pm Arrive home; greet anyone at the house.
6:50pm Drop bag off in room; change into comfier pants.
7:05pm Socialize with family; test out new Wolof words; struggle with French; play with Saliou, the maid’s baby. Sometimes I go to our roof where Bas’s students are studying and work on homework. At some point the people in my house I’m hanging out with go to the mosque to pray, but I haven’t figured out exactly what time this is yet. At that point, I head to my room and do homework or go online.
8:33pm Go downstairs to living room so I’m around when dinner is ready. Watch TV/talk if someone else is. Otherwise, write or study.
9:25pm Eat dinner. It’s always with mama, but the other people around the table varies. My sister is often there, and two of my brothers are often there, but it’s never all of us at the same time. Always someone is out and about. Take vitamins.
9:35pm Go upstairs; relax; write; homework; laptop; blog.
10:10pm Shower, change clothes. Wash undergarments.
10:40pm Walk to Yama’s house, drink ataaya; hang out with him and his friends. Sometimes I ask him for help with my homework. If I don’t go to Yama’s house I hang out with my friends from school, either at their homes or the bar.
12:20am Yama walks me home; computer; pack my bag for school tomorrow. Fill my water bottles. I force myself to drink 2 liters, minimum, every day. Read my Bible, journal.
1:15am Set alarm, bed time.
1:17am Already sleeping.
Learning French: Il sent bon, He smells good. (What I want to say when many a Senegalese man passes.)