Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Streaming and dreaming

I'm sitting on my couch with a cup of coffee balanced on my laptop, totally adrift and at a loss as to what to do. I don't want to go into the D.Sh.P. today because I know the door will be locked and I'll have to call Lena or Moza and then try to decipher what they're shouting to me on the other end of the phone. I just want to tell them, "I can hear you, it's ok!" but I don't have the language skills yet.

It feels like a Sunday but it's a Wednesday and so I feel guilty about not being productive.

It was pouring rain when I got up early this morning to plug in my water heater. I hoped it would last the day,  so I could have an excuse to stay inside but now, I'm sure I'm the only one who's disappointed that the sun is out and there aren't any clouds in the sky. From my balcony, I watch people go about their lives: the shopkeeper sweeping the sidewalk in front of her store and spraying water from an old soda bottle to keep the dust down; the old men in their vests and fedoras riding their bikes to meet other old men for coffee, cigarettes nonchalantly hanging from their lips as they smoke and peddle at the same time; the qun* packs wandering around with their arms across their brothers' shoulders, cracking jokes and shouting American swear words; the Roma digging through the dumpsters in front of my building, searching for plastics and metals to turn in for spare leke. 

My apartment is still a mess. It's clean-ish but totally unorganized...or as they say in shqip, "unregular-ized" (rregulluar). I'm a PCV living in a third world country, yet this place is infinitely nicer than my housing in college ever was. I have a wardrobe to myself...probably the only thing I don't miss about living with Becky is the abysmally small closets we had. I have a hood for my oven. I have a washing machine.

I don't have a toilet seat, though. I'm not living in total luxury.

But I have to go grocery shopping (instead of just stopping at the fruit stand on my way home at the end of the day), I have to call my landlady about the building key and my energy meter and plan the coffee she wants to have next week, the floors already need re-mopping, I have basil seeds to plant and spices from Kip to organize and an address to figure out and a want-list to write for my mother and emails to answer and paperwork to read through and sort and translations and studying to do and I should put on make-up because when I leave the house I'm bound to meet someone important and so have to be prepared to always, always make a good impression.

But all I want to do is read NPR and catch up on blogs and paint my toe nails.

*a "qun" (choon) is a boy. We PCVs use it in a way that is not quite correctly translated - instead of just the generic "boy" or "guy", we use it to mean something more like "punks". Improper translation, but PCV-speak.

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