Finally a Place to Hang our Hat

We have a home in Botswana!!! We moved
into our place 1 month ago and are finally settling in. Having our own space
has made a huge difference in the quality of our daily life. I didn’t fully
realize that we have been basically living either out of a suitcase or small
ration of clothes, surrounded by boxes or on the move since last August. I
also didn’t realize how much stress this was adding to our lives until we finally
unpacked everything and settled in.  Wheww it feels so great!

We did find out that signing a lease for an unfinished
property in Botswana was a bit of a gamble. The day we were told to move in was
about a week earlier than it should have been. The place was filthy and had a
number of things that were totally not working – even basic stuff like running
water and gas. Garrett spend hours looking over everything to find all of the
broken or missing items. He had to fight to get them fixed or repaired in a
timely manner. Most of the time they had to be repaired multiple times because
things were not done right the first time. A month later we are still trying to
get things fixed correctly. It also seemed like Garrett’s head was going to
explode with seeing the poor quality of workmanship that was done on the condo
– crooked walls, cracked tiles, paint splattered everywhere, non functional
windows just to name a few. Since he does construction for a living, it pains him to see things so mismanaged. I went to take a shower for the first time and
found that no water was coming out – when Garrett went to investigate he was
able to pull the pipe right out of the wall – it had not even been soldered in
place! In these unfortunately common circumstances, I have learned to just take a deep breathe and say “Oh well – TIA” (as the common expat saying goes- This Is Africa).

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But all the little details aside,
it really is a nice place to live. So convenient for work and a good location
for anything we want to do in Gabs. We have met most of our neighbors now – one
is a physician who has worked for the government in the past which is a great
resource for me. Skippy can run around the complex and seems to be happy enough
with his indoor and outdoor space. Having 3 bedrooms is great. One spare is
Garrett’s office and the other I use for a workout room/crafting room. We have
space on the back deck to grill and eat outdoors. We are working on making a
garden, just succulents for now but we are going to try to grow some veggies in
the spring. Also the pool will be so great when it gets up to 40 C again! We have
a maid that comes once a week who is amazingly thorough and so sweet. She was
the maid that cleaned the house I stayed in as a visiting resident. She asked
to be our maid when we moved here and I couldn’t be happier – she does the best
job of any maid I have ever seen for only $10 a week!!

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We have finally accumulated enough
furniture to feel at home. Everything except for the bed, sheets, fridge and
washer we bought used. I feel like we really earned each item we own because of the amount of time and effort It took to acquire! But we met some cool people on our searches. You just never know what you will find here –
often unexpected occurrences and never a dull moment! I am just trying to take
it all in and reminding myself daily that “nothing is good or bad but thinking
makes it so.”

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