2. You buy, enjoy, and don’t worry about the fact that your roasted peanuts were roasted in some sand. And I don’t mean clean packaged sand. I meant sandy dirt which was inevitably scooped up by some woman or child from somewhere near the area of the fire, and dumped into a pot with the nuts so they wouldn’t burn.
3. You cross an international border to get online
4. You’ve been stuffed into the back of a van which was already carrying 38 passengers
5. You not only tolerate but begin to crave bean, egg, spaghetti sandwiches.
6. You actually now prefer bucket showers
7. You have a hard time remembering to “flush” when you’re away at hotels with indoor plumbing
8. People walk into your clinic with complaints such as “there’s an animal in my stomach” and one of the most common complaints is machete wounds.
9. Ibuprofen: Guinea Bissau :: Narcotics: the United States
10. You mix up banana bread before 9am so that it has all day to bake in the solar oven. Pray for lots of sunlight because if its gets too overcast you’ll have to go next door and pay the baker with a few Ibuprofen to finish baking it for you.
11. You speak a language where “yo” is a verb, adjective, noun, you name it. It’s a complete thought.
12. Everyone in the village knows which dog belongs to your teammate because he’s gentian violet purple due to his little skin problem.
13. When someone says they’ll come over around noon, you actually leave the house around noon to go buy some food, then you come home and get a shower, and finally you begin to cook expect lunch will be ready by the time they arrive.
14. You wonder if your outfits either really dirty or ugly if no one has asked for it within the first few hours your awake
15. You stare and point and then say “hey look, there goes a branco” when a car drives by with a white person inside.
16. Half your teammates don’t own washcloths… nuff said
17. You go “swimming” when you need to unplug the pipe in a cylindrical reservoir which collects water pumped for the well to water the palms… and you love it!
18. A chicken has snuck in and laid eggs on a pile of your teammates’ dirty laundry in your bedroom… three days in a row!
19. During an important phone call to a college in the US you say “sta ban” (its good) then hang up. Then one of your teammate erupts in laughter realizing that the person on the end of the line is probably wondering what on earth you just said to them.
20. You and your teammates have already planned lunch dates where you will talk in a “secret language.” You’re actually planning to speak in Portuguese Kriol, a language that less than 0.2 percent of the world speaks.
21. You don’t find it unusual to have a cow, a few pigs, or several goats tied on top of your transport van… in addition to the (on average) 25-35 people, their small children, chickens, and others goods to sell packed inside.
22. A kid walks through the gate and toward you with some sort of new pet in hand. Appears at first to be a puppy or something. Once he gets closer you realize it’s a GIANT dead RAT he’s planning to roast and eat.
23. You’re in the clinic alone and suddenly it sounds like a little kid is coughing and coughing. So you get up and walk out on the veranda only to find a kid (the kind with horns and fur and on 4 legs) coughing up a lung. Good
24. Members of your team say things like “I brought LOTS of underwear to Africa, at least 4 or 5 pairs.”