Just to let you know ….here are some of the ways in which my life is much easier here in Sierra Leone.
#1. Better and cheaper childcare – This ONE is one of the main benefits! In England, we had more less no family (no grandma of any sorts) available to help us with the children. And we dared not hire a childminder or such like because of the prevalence of paedophilia. So apart from the few hours a day they spent at school, we were their main stay which meant, we were not able to go out as often as we wanted, in fact rarely. But now, we have family and trusted hired help who can look after the children so we can go out a bit more often.
#2. Plenty Of Help – This is related to the above. We used to be the driver, cleaner, launderer, cook, judge, jury,clown, you name it. We did everything ourselves. Now well, how shall I say it – I only do the first 4 as and when I want to usually maybe 1x a week. This leaves me free to pursue things that are important to me.
#3. Amazing Weather – Gone are the days when the radiaters in the lounge, bedrooms, bathrooms every nook and cranny was filled with wet clothes trying hard to get dry. Now my laundry takes 2 hours tops(in the dry season) to get dry! Yep and even in the rainy season, when it takes longer, I don’t keep any damp clothes in the house! Better still, I don’t have to check the weather before I go out each time. I don’t have to wear 4 different tops PLUS a jacket. In fact, I can’t remeber the last time I wore BLACK!! Frankly I hated the cold and the greyness and worse still the grey coats and jackets that went with it alongside the miserable long faces of anonymous people hurrying to work.
#4. Beautiful Beaches – I mean need I say more???
Even the honourable Tony Blair (ex prime minister of England) is trumpeting the natural beauty of Mama Salone to all and anyone who will listen.
About 3 weeks ago, my hubby and I went to a deserted beach near the Charles Margai College. Apart from a few fishermen, there was no other person!!! And it was a pleasure to watch how the fish is caught. We’ll take the children there some time.
#5. Friendliness – Generally most Africans are friendly but even more so Sierra Leoneans. I remember, my first few months and years in England when I used to help “old ladies” carrying heavy shopping only to met with stares and icy “No”s. Although some accepted my help, I learnt to stop asking. It’s the not caring of another human being that kills the soul. Although, I didn’t use public transport often especially in the latter years, the reports of people being stabbed or killed while others are watching was unbelievable. I felt I was becoming an “Ice Queen” Now I’m thawing and beginning to care again! 🙂
#6. Organic Food – Quite frankly, when you look at the stalls of the vegetable sellers here, it leaves you wanting. The vegetables look drab 😯 and most times uninviting but I’ve learnt to celebrate the fact that most of the food are grown in someone’s back yard who probably hasn’t got enough money to buy fertiliser, sprays and all the stuff that makes food so artificial. And did I mention the goat meat??? ahh now that’s is something.
#7.Freedom – Now this is a double edged sword. On one hand, any society needs law and order and I do miss that. However, I’m happy I don’t have to worry about cameras, parking tickets, Big Brother and Sisters, you name it that can make life so straight jacket. I remember, when we came, we played our music at a low volume and one of our friends who’d also returned reminded us that we don’t need to lower it as our neighbours are not going to report and there’ll be no police at the door! We laughed. 😉 Some reminder…
#8.Business Opportunities – To emphasize this point, we bumped into one of our friends who’d just come on Holiday and he said to us, he’s staying for another month to clear his land and start building because he realised there’re more opportunities here than in England. Yep and this is a guy that owns a number of shops in popular malls… I cannot write kreole here, but Salone people, if you don’t come foreigners will continue to run the show and enjoy the good of the land. 😳
Next time, I’ll write about what I miss…. 😆