Irenasjourney Blog

Its been a while…
November 2, 2009, 11:17 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Ok, wow, it feels like its been so long. I’ve been kind of busy so here’s the update. A couple of weeks ago, I went to a  pre=”a “>Lioli game, a couple PC parties, the Morija Cultural Festival, I taught a class about HIV/Aids, and planted a garden.

The Lioli (dee-o-dee) game was crazy! Lioli is the local/ professional soccer team in TY. A person in TY is a Seoli (say-o dee) and the people are Lioli. Anyway…we get to the game which in the TY Stadium and at the entrance they tell us we have to turn around and pay R5 (about 67 cents) to the lady back there…the lady sitting in the back seat of a car with the window half rolled down. It felt like a drug deal. A lady standing outside the car stamped our arms and we were allowed in. the stadium turned out to be a dirt field. No seats (though I’m not sure why I was expecting any). Situated between ‘modern day Detroit’ and the ‘slums’; see pics. ‘Modern day Detroit’ is actually a grocery store on the floor level, owned by Asians. The rest of the building is where the Asians live. The ‘slums’ are actually the back side of the TY taxi rank. You have to love this place! The game was wild, the fans were great, and it ended in a tie.


On September 19 we had a huge “north side” party where basically all the people (PCVs and some ex-pats) living in the north side of the country came and we had a party at a park. That was real wild and I’ve learned PCVs are pretty nasty people. I am going to leave it at that…but enjoy the pics.


On October 10th we had a ‘New-b/ going away party for my district. We were welcoming the new people (which is me and the 2 others from my group) and saying good bye to the PCVs whose service was ending. A pretty great night too. Both parties we ate and drank well.


The Morija Arts and Cultural Festival was pretty neat too. Getting there was as a wild time. Five girls from my group got together at a house the day before and went to the festival together. Instead of paying for transport, we decided we would hitch…so our first ride came in the form of a police paddy wagon. We got in the back and as soon as the policeman shut the door, there was no air and a sense of claustrophobia. However, as soon as he started driving there was a nice breeze and we all calmed down. The police did not go all the way to Morija so they dropped us off and we began hitching for another ride. This time a man with 2 others in the car stopped to pick us up. 8 people were now in the car the size of a VW Golf. Just around the bend however was a police stop. The driver clumsily slammed on the brakes and pulled into a village. We were like 20 feet from the police and the village road was too bad to drive up…so we (the PCVs) got out the car and instantly were greeted by a group of kids. In some pathetic attempt to elude the police, we began singing anything we could think of from the Lesotho National Anthem to the Hokey Pokey. It didn’t work…the police called us over and in the beginning we were all going to jail for riding 8 in a car that seats 5. This driver also had a temporary tag and was allowed only 3 people in the car at a time. After about 30 minutes the police told us only the driver is going to jail but we all have to go to the station as witnesses to the offense…another 15 minutes later the police let us go J . we walked a bit from the police and this time got in public for the remainder of the trip to Morija. The festival itself was pretty cool. There were quite a few tents, though many were more than half empty, and there was a really good tent of crafts from Swaziland. I think I mentioned in a past blog that my weavers were going to be there, and they were. Morija did not go very well for them as 4 of the 5 days it rained pretty hard. So, in hindsight, I should have bought a lot more crafts, but I guess there is always next year.


The class I taught on HIV/Aids was just this past week and it was in a village in Mafeteng. 5 PCVs and myself taught Form A students (which are like 7th grade) about how they can get HIV and how to protect themselves. We taught a one hour class for 3 days. It was so cool. I am really glad I got to do this because as I am working with weavers, this is not something I will normally be doing. Anyway, it went really well. The information was received well and when you could tell the kids were really getting what you were saying, it was encouraging. Some things you could tell they did not get…but most of the message was received. They had so many questions; it was awesome but also a shame because the Basotho rarely talk about things like this.  Recently, the ministry of education said life skills must be taught in every school, but Basotho are soo shy to talk about things like sex and condoms and HIV/Aids. It never happens here and that’s why there is such a huge Aids epidemic here. Anyway, it was great and the girl we stayed with had a dog J you all know how I feel about doggies!!


On the way home from Mafeteng, a PCV and I hitched again, and you know what happened…got in a car designed to seat  3 but now had 4 people total. The driver ran a police stop because he didn’t want to go to jail for the overload…the cops chased us…and after some more smooth talking and another 30 minutes, they let the driver go and they drove us to the capital, Maseru. LOL, the cops are always catching me…but I guess they like Americans J


And so before you fall asleep, I planted my garden about 10 days ago. So far my radishes have sprouted along with a bunch of weeds I did not plant. I planted some tomatoes and peppers in egg cartons, but by the time I came home from Mafeteng they were bone dry…I don’t think they’ll make it.


That’s that…for now. Thanks again for all your support…I love you guys…and miss ya for sure!



Detroit/ Lioli game

Detroit/ Lioli game


Karolina and slums, aka taxi rank in the back
Karolina and the slums/ the taxi rank at the Lioli game



PC party and Chris' b-day; no, both those drinks are not mine

PC party and Chris’ b-day; no, both of those drinks are not mine



PC party, Sept. 19th

PC party, Sept. 19th


We're so cute and soo PC
We’re so cute and soo PC (sept. 19th)



New-b party Oct 10th

New-b party, Oct 10th



New-b party

Karolina, new-b party





Our ride to Morija




Our second ride to Morija




Morija Cultural Fest




  Oh, Jess is too cute- but in the background are some of the weavings at Morija

Morija Fest


  Morija Fest

Awesome herd boys as we are leaving Morija




















1 Comment so far
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Hi! You look like you are having a blast! I have been carrying around a card for you for weeks, I promise to go to the post office tomorrow.
A few notes on us-Alex has a serious girlfriend and we love her-Jael! she is a student at Johnson and Wales and works at Applebe’s-She brought Fidel over to see me! I am no longer with Nexus-long ugly story. But, I am still with Crisis assistance and have started new ventures with Hands on Charlotte and Urban Ministry Center!
Take Care, my friend!!

Comment by Kat

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