December

This morning I was running and realized something huge: It is December.

How we jumped from the ninth month to the twelfth, so quickly, I do not know. What I do know is that this month is a big one.

I started December in Mokhotolong, one Lesotho’s mountain districts. I went there as soon as my school closed to visit the Mokhotolong volunteers and see a new part of the country. It was simply breathtaking. I spent a few days visiting my friend Katie and living like a mountain lady. In the mornings, I ran along a road that weaved in and out of hills and then accompanied Katie to school. Her school is much larger than mine and we discussed at length the differences between a large rural school and a small one not to far from the nation’s capital. After school, we knitted, painted our nails, listened to Christmas music, made hand turkeys and baked. We also watched a movie and spent far too much time gushing over Zac Effron (We’ve been in Africa a looooong time). Katie lives on a mountainside and the views are simply breathtaking and the people are incredibly friendly. My phone didn’t work at her site, which allowed me to enjoy each second of the simple mountain life.

On the weekend, we met up with the other volunteers in the camp town for a belated Thanksgiving with too much food and wine. It was wonderful. We wore dressy clothes, danced and proudly used the hand turkey’s Katie and I made as placemats. Before the festivities, we cheered on runners at the annual Summer High Altitude Marathon. The biggest attraction for other event attendees was not the parade of five white people, but my Vibram shoes. Every kid we passed yelled, “bona,” or look, and giggled at my toe-accentuated shoes. I am always happy to provide the entertainment.

Back in village, I’ve been working on a few second projects and well as my napping skills. I am getting so good. The break from school is a nice chance to recollect but I know it will go fast. This weekend, Hannah and I are taking a romantic getaway to South Africa (ssh, don’t tell her boyfriend) where we will eat everything in site. In the middle of the month, a former Lesotho PCV and college professor is coming with a group of students to help with library beautification and plant apple trees at my school. A big Christmas feast is currently in the works and then I will ring in 2013 with a group of friends along the beaches of Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

Besides being full of going-ons, December marks the beginning of my 12-month countdown. This time next year, I will be preparing to leave Lesotho. It’s bittersweet because I am already anxious to see my family and friends, but it is a stark reminder that my time in this beautiful country is limited. Twelve months is not very long at all, on either side of the issue.

Throughout the month, I will likely not be blogging as much. I do not have electricity at my house and, with school closed, my opportunities to charge are limited. I’ll do as much as I can as I am sure you all wait with baited breath for each of my posts, but please have patience. Same goes for emails and Facebook messages.

So you know why I am excited about this month, now it is your time to share. What are you looking forward most about December? Is it the holidays? The end of another year? The fact that no one cares if you eat an entire batch of cookie dough because you did it in honor of St. Nick? Share with me and I will respond when I can. Till then, happy December.

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5 thoughts on “December

  1. Hi, my name is Richard Foote and I am a student at The Right Turn. One thing I liked about your post is that you guys celebrate the holidays over there too. Whats suprising is that you only have a year to go then you could see your family its probaly lonely without your family I could only last a month then i got to go see my mom lol. How are the holidays over there i bet christmas is very differen without the snow. My question is how different the holidays are over there do they have different holidays or do they go by the same one’s. Well hopefully you have a good rest of the year until then have a “MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEARS”.

  2. hi my name is ruby sazue and i am a student at the right turn. one thing that i have a question about is your shoes that you were wearing??? what are vibram shoes??? its sounds different i was just wondering.

    • Hi, Ruby! Vibram shoes are the ones I use for running and they are very funny looking. They look almost like your barefeet because you can see your toes. When I am not running, I wear regular sandals. Hope your studies are going well!

  3. Hi my name is Kimberly Washechek, I am a student at the Right Turn. Is the clothing there different? Do they celeibrate the same holidays as us?

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 🙂

    • Hi, Kimberly, Basotho usually wear the same clothes as from day to day, but they usually like to dress very nice. The men wear slacks and button up shirts while women wear skirts and blouses. For traditional events, they have special dresses made out of traditional material called Seshoeshoe. They also have leather pieces that look like loin clothes for very traditional events. Basotho celebrate Christmas and New Year, but they have their own independence day and a few other holidays specific to their own history. They have a day celebrating the king, but not Thanksgiving 🙂 Hope 2013 is treating you well and good luck with your studies!

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