Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Never A Dull Month

Sorry for the uncharacteristic silence the last couple of weeks.
I am still here - I have just been sick.

I know in my last post, I said I was sick - but I was going back to post. Long story short it didn't really happen that way I am sorry if anyone was worried - I know most of the people who read this blog are my friends from home and therefore are also on facebook - still I wanted to apologize anyway.

Unfortunately, for me, being sick this time meant being stuck in the headquarters, sleeping a lot, taking lots of medications, and not doing very much else. Hence the silence. I am still here and I am getting better SO no worries. - It is just hard to blog when you have no energy and are sleeping all day. I kind of feel like I fell asleep mid April and woke up in May.

I don't actually have a topic to write about today either, just that I wanted to check in and give some updates.

Firstly, what I know everyone is wondering. My health is OK. I have a bad cough (that started with a bad flu) but it is finally (after 3 weeks!!) starting to go away. My energy level is also improving (mostly due to the fact that I am no longer on as many medications). I know volunteers love to complain, and our medical care is often at the top of the list. -- That being said people complain when things are bad - and forget to mention when things are good. I want to take this opportunity to say that the doctor here was incredible the last few weeks. She took great care of me - went above and beyond to make sure that my cough wasn't anything more than just a "chronic cough" sent me to specialists and tested me for every possible sickness - she was incredibly thorough and dedicated to making sure that I stopped coughing. I know that sounds silly, but it is true. Having a constant bad cough for weeks on end is exhausting, and she never made me feel like I was being a hassle - She wanted me to be better just as much as I wanted to be better, and even came in on weekends and holidays to check on me. I really appreciate the amazing care and attention I was given. *** I am not saying other volunteer complaints are unfounded I am just saying that I had a really amazing experience - maybe I'm just lucky *** I am being cleared to go to our Close of Service Conference this weekend and if all goes as planned will finally be back in post next week sometime. 

Secondly (and way more exciting)!! I am officially COSing from Peace Corps at the end of July!! My early COS (close of service) was approved for graduate school in August. YAY!! See you in July America!!! I will try my best to keep you updated during my last few months here in Benin on what wrapping up service is like - and of course reflections on all of the things I will miss when I am back home. 

Lastly, it is mango season!!! I know I am a few weeks late posting about this but Mango season is the best season and there are mangoes EVERYWHERE!! In honor of that - and in honor of the fact that I have been spending a lot of time updating our volunteer cookbook - I have a recipe to share with you from Burkina's PCV cookbook!!!

Mango Wine

What you need: 6 mangoes, 2 bananas, sugar, water, a large bucket and fabric to cover it with, a mixing spoon, and plastic 2 or 3 large plastic bottles. 

Peel the mangos, do not throw away the peels!! Cut the skin of the mango into small pieces. Keep the meat of the mango and throw away the seed. Mash the meat of the mango with the bananas (peeled) in a plastic bucket (or large bowl).  

Mix mashed fruit with mango peels. 
Add sugar. *The quantity should be about 2/3 of the banana/mango mixture* 

Add half as much water as the fruit/sugar mixture and mix well. Remember how much water you added, you will need to know later. 

Cover the bucket with fabric and tie string around to keep it covered. Keep it a room temperature and mix 3-5 times a day. After 3-4 days, you will see bubbles as alcohol begins to form. Filter your fruit mixture. Add the same amount of water as before to the filtered liquid. Put the liquid in plastic bottles and cover the tops with fabric, tied with a string.  Store at room temperature for 10-14 days. If you wait to long it will turn to vinegar.


  1. Yayyyy for you coming home in a couple of months. I hope the last two months go by quickly for you! Mango wine?? that sounds amazing! :-)

    1. Thank you!!! Once I am all settled in back home we have to make plans to catch up!!!