Today was my first official day at work here in Juba. Lots of names I’m trying desperately to remember, and a bit of overstimulation from wanting to look/be everywhere all at once. My supervisor, who is based out of our Boston office, is here for a week, so we’re trying to get all the start-up work done before she needs to leave the country on Friday.
We were able to visit a health facility and interview the staff for a bit. Without divulging too much information about the facility itself, it was interesting to speak with the staff about their challenges and perceived challenges, but also where they feel they succeed. And while many may not feel this way, seeing tens of mothers all sitting around in 100+*F heat with often screaming and/or ill infants did not make me any more eager to have children and time soon.
Showered last night. I was told there was hot water, and showed how to turn on everything when I checked in. However, I was not showed that there was a switch above the shower that turns on the hot water. Not gonna lie, cold showers when it’s 100*F out? Only about 1/4 as unpleasant as normal cold showers.
Mr. Spider lives under that toilet. We’re still blissfully getting along. Please, Mr. Spider, help yourself to all the mosquitoes and flies you want! Really!
And if anyone hasn’t heard the news, the government recently decided that South Sudan will be the official name of the newly independent country come July 9th. It’s neat to be in the city so shortly post-referendum (as well as just after the official results announcements) – such a great energy and a lot of enthusiasm about the newly (almost) independent country! Driving around, I’ve spotted probably hundreds of signs throughout the city encouraging people to vote in the referendum. I talked to our driver today who told us about all his friends who waited in line since 4am til 6pm the first day so that they could vote.
Didn’t melt today either. Woooot! 103*F heat, I win!
(PS, Thank you, once again, South Sudan for your lack of humidity. Love, Erin)