Well, today has been a much better day. I think this last week could be characterized as having lots of ups and downs. Aggrey (my host dad) met me in Luanda, where I was staying to show us the way back to the village, because we were coming from a different direction than I was used to coming. We came in Lucy and Sammy’s car and so they were able to see where I live here. My host dad got soda’s for them and send them home with a chicken and some cowpeas for planting. The idea was to cook chicken for them (it’s a special guest food), but they needed to get back (and my host mom, Rachel wasn’t home yet) so they sent them home with a chicken instead!
As I arrived in the village, I was pleasantly surprised by a number of changes. The road leading to the village had been smoothed out and is now quite drivable, although the road leading to it is still in the same state of waiting to be paved that it was 4 years ago. There is now a public borehole (well) in the village that apparently was put in after the current government was elected at the end of 2002. At the family compound, there is also a borehole, which makes water much easier. There are also lots of new cows and two of the boys are building there houses. Inside the house, there is some new furniture and the walls are a different color (yellow instead of blue). There are three little boys, one of whom is the child of the oldest son in the family. But, the best part was seeing all of my family. Well, not all of them. A lot of them are living and/or working in other places, but I saw my host dad Aggrey, three brothers and my host mom, Rachel, all with very excited reunions. Everything at home seems very familiar and I’m smelling lots of familiar things – kerosene lamps, fresh air, and certain plants. As nervous as I felt about coming, it certainly feels good to be here. I talked to my host dad some about what I want to do with my research and I’m getting excited about it again. As we were out walking a bit I saw a number of people who remembered me, a few of whom I remembered, but I did remember who lives in a lot of the houses nearby. I even pulled out a few Luhya words. I told people though, that I have forgotten my Luhya words, but that I can speak Swahili now. If I can remember a few Luhya greetings in the next couple days, I’ll be all set. Well, that’s all for now. Dinner’s almost ready.