Discomfort and Abidjan

It has been two months since I moved to Abidjan and I am still adjusting to life here and finding things that I like. Professionally it is a great fit, I like my job, the students are good, my colleagues are nice, the school lunch is usually good and fish is often on the menu. I have the freedom to work at my own pace and do things the way I see fit , my principal is nice, he respects and trusts my judgment, asks if there is anyway he can help when I am busy and does not micromanage me. I cannot begin to explain how this is so crucial for me to be happy professionally. I have gone out to eat a couple of times so I know there are decent restaurants with good food in other neighborhoods outside of mine. I can get most food items at the grocery store even though it is much more expensive to live here unlike the last two places I lived. I know, I know comparison is the source of unhappiness but I digress. There are some good beaches outside of Abidjan so there will be opportunities after the rainy season ends to explore these over the weekend. There is a reggae scene here so I will definitely get to some concerts even though they will be in French. Eventually I will make friends outside of school and that will give my life more variety.

I have to admit I dislike my apartment because I have had to get so many things fixed in the last two months. The latest challenge is the that when it rains really hard water comes into my window. Then there is the fact that it is on a raggedy path – not a real road on a dead end at the back of a neighborhood. I don’t have an address and it is difficult to get food delivered since the drivers struggle to use gps and some don’t even have it. The chirping birds wake me up at 5 am every morning which make me feel like I am living in a nature park🤦🏾‍♀️.

When I lived in Ethiopia I was sometimes grossed out at restaurants and clubs because there was no soap to wash my hands and sometimes no water to flush and buckets of water to use in bathrooms so I took hand sanitizer with me all the time. However it never happened at school and I can count on one hand the amount of times I lost water in my apartment in the 2 years. When I moved to Thailand and Egypt I was able to forget this situation because water issues did not occur for me there. Now that I am in Abidjan I am reminded of this issue and it makes me want to leave. I am bougie but I can adjust to a lot of things but having no water and having to use a bucket to flush the toilet and wash my hands is not one of them. It is a habit I find to be extremely gross and infuriating. The water outages happen here way too often, it has already been several times in two months. l have to say waking up to no water sets your day off to a difficult start as it did this morning. Truthfully if I had known this was something I would have to deal with so often I would have passed on the job. You would think that in a country where it rains so much that someone would have figured out a water to store rain water so as to eliminate water outages. Unfortunately I don’t believe that it is something that will change any time soon. Ugh WTF😫? When I woke up this morning after 6 am there was no water, when I left work at 3:30 pm there was still no water. So we spent the day at work with no running water using that green bucket to flush the toilet and try to wash our hands #gross 😭 This morning we got an email from our HoS saying the water company said it is a minor issue that should be fixed soon. Hmmm I’m not sure what soon meant to them. Luckily when I got home after 5 it was back on and I’m grateful for that.

I wondered whether to write this blog because I know a lot of people have negative views of the African continent and I don’t want to contribute to that but this blog is about my experiences and so…total honesty 🤔 is necessary. I know that someone who lives somewhere where this happens regularly will sigh when they read this post and think that I am overreacting: luckily this post is not for them.

So while things are going okay for the most part, I am alright and I am not unhappy most days, yet the struggle is real🤷🏾‍♀️. I recently had a friend ask me what is my favorite personal thing about moving to Abidjan and it was difficult to answer. Of course there is the food, hair salons to get my hair done, access to beaches (although I have not been), coconut ice cream, coconut water when I can find it, at home massages and the weather is tropical once this damn rainy season ends. These are all good things so there is hope.😉 #BlackExpat #EDpat #EbonyExpat #ExpatDivas blackwomenwhoblog #blackandabroad #thelittlethingsinlife #LifeinAbidjan #settlingin #startingoveragain

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Your honesty and emotion shows in these beautiful run on sentences. As a woman writer too I respect how your words ebb and flow–like Life. Your resilience and respect for differences shows up as a desire to overstand, not a rant disparaging the continent. No worries, no matter the reader. Well Done, Sis.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks my goal was to be balanced in my description of my experience

      Like

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