I realized today that it would be perfectly appropriate for Peace Corps to change its name. To “Well, That’s a Surprise.” Not as catchy, maybe, but descriptive of Peace Corps life.
Sometimes it’s very small things. This evening I opened a can of Fruit Punch. I expected it to be red. It was bright green. It tasted like most fruit punch, it just didn’t look like most fruit punch. Whatever, it was cold and fizzy. Just what I wanted.
This afternoon I was in the office after my last class, working on lesson plans. A teacher came in and asked me to make some copies. That happens several times a day. I’m frequently asked to stop teaching to make copies.
Today, though, the copies were for a young guy from some organization that is teaching cricket in the schools. I made the copies and gave them to the guy and his partner. Both attractive Samoan men. The teacher who’d asked for the copies stayed and I teased her that as soon as she saw handsome men in “my” room she came running. Then another teacher arrived. I made the same joke. Then a third teacher arrived, my best friend, and I pointed out that she was the devil and would never leave me alone with good-looking young men.
Then they all sat down. One of the men asked me for brown paper and markers. “Are we having a meeting?” “Yes and you have to attend.” Well, that’s a surprise. I didn’t expect a meeting at the end of the day and never in my life did I expect this topic. Not in my wildest fantasies did I ever expect to participate in training, in Samoan, to be a cricket umpire. If you think having me receive the training is funny, there were three other women in the session. Two are pregnant and the third makes me look anorexic. If we are the future of cricket in our village, I believe the effort is doomed.
We did have fun, though, and they checked occasionally to make sure I was getting all the sexual humor. I was, especially when we practiced the signal for “dead ball(s)”. Everyone gave the signal, yelled “dead balls” and I just held my nose. All laughed heartily. That’s Samoan humor.
Less of a surprise recently is the number of rats and mice. I’ve seen at least one a day in my fale and several a day at school. This evening though, as I was typing this, was my Well, That’s a Surprise moment when I saw two roosters heading toward my door. That’s not unusual. They know what times of day I sweep the bugs out of my house and they like to be there for it. This time they weren’t looking for food because the largest (and oldest) rooster was carrying a very large rat. The other rooster was chasing him and trying to get him to drop it. Cocks, rats and fights. So many jokes, so little time. Please just make your own. List them on comments