Thursday, September 2, 2010

Malaria, Akon, and Cotonou!!

Hey everybody. Things are still going. I hosted the trainees again this year for a technical visit in my village and it went really well. They seem to really enjoy my site and the work I was involved in. We even got to see a voodoo fetish performance. It was great. There was a lot of dancing. Everything was awesome. The following week was not so awesome. I ended up getting malaria. My fault. I was a week late taking my medication. Because I'm in idiot who didn't think I would actually catch it. It was the worst thing ever. I felt like I was hit by a car, my temperature reached over 103 degrees, dry cough, I couldn't move, and I had serious cold chills. It's almost like the flu but ten times worse. I HONESTLY thought I could die. But I'm okay now!!! Could you imagine if I had NO antimalaria medication in my system. I could have really died. Don't wanna play with that idea again. What else. I went to Akon's concert here in Cotonou, Benin. It was quite an event. First of all, the show started at 4pm, but he didn't get on stage until 1:30am. They played a song called Ashawo which was good, HOWEVER, the girl who was dancing was over the top! She had her legs open dancing on the floor on her back, climbing up the goal post on the field, one guy was dry humping her.....eww. That was really stank. Then there was an extremely long performace about the independance of Benin which was great for the first twenty minutes but after about an hour people were like, "okay now....where is Akon???" Then it started raining and they said they wouldn't bring him out.....people were ready to riot. Then he FINALLY got out on the field in a SUV driving around the stadium. There was soooo much energy. He got on the stage and told everybody to leave their seats and surround the stage on the you know where you are Akon? We could have a stampede if you didn't know. Because I'm bold, I did manage to get outta my seat leave the building, resulting in getting slightly pepper sprayed, witnessing a police beating of a man who had his ticket trying to get in, my glasses got lost, Akon spraying us with bottled water, getting the chance to actually touch Akon's butt through a bubble, and feel a piece of his shirt, and was crowd surfed on. All in all, it was worth it. At least I think so. I can say that I was there and experienced all of that. Akon did not know how to speak french, therefore, the organizing of people moving to the field was crazy. The security team were not the brightest. But I had a lot of fun and was happy I did it. All for five thousand cfa AKA 10 bucks. For the record, I really did touch Akon's booty. It was quite firm : )

I left my village today. It was really sad to leave them. There were tears involved. Even my boss cried at the going away ceremony on last Friday. They were great. They gave me clothe to make an outfit, the priest gave me a beautiful cross with pictures on it to put up in my new house, and a carving of huts. They didn't have to give me anything but they did. I am so grateful and with take the gifts back with me to the states. People coming to my door every five minutes asking for a gift was a little overwhelming but besides that, everyone was really nice. Bridgette who will be working there seems to really like the place so that's encouraging. She's already speaking a little bit of Fon! I'm sure she'll fit right in. Now I'm in Cotonou and it feels weird to actually be living in a city from the bush. It's so different. So EXPENSIVE! I'll be fine though.

I'm still going to Brazil and home. In two weeks!!!!! Can't wait! I am soooo excited!!!!