12 March – Kossouka, 9:03pm
It's been a difficult couple of days. A door to door polio vaccination campaign started on Thursday, meaning I'm getting up much to early to go biking around to other villages, and nationally things with the students are just getting worse. Sunyata came and visited for 8 Mars (well, actually it just happened to coincide that her being able to visit was on the holiday) and it was lovely to have the company and see the village through new eyes. Now I have an extra kitten, and unfortunately we got put on standfast exactly an hour after she got back to Ouaga. The plan was that she would go to an art festival in her old village near Fada, and instead of leaving Lion with friends in Ouaga she would stay here with Sophie and me, to be returned when I went into Ouaga for my VAC meeting that was supposed to be tomorrow but has since been postponed. So she's stuck in Ouaga and couldn't go to the art festival anyway, and I'm stuck here and can't return Lion. Oh well, at least she's good company and keeps Sophie running around!
It's finally starting to hit me just how homesick I am, constantly thinking about my friends and college and crew spring break and skiing and Denver and camping and dancing to music I actually like. They told us this would happen but somehow I didn't expect it to be like this. Ilias (the boy who wants to marry me when he becomes a doctor) was saying that now that I'm going to be Burkinabe and live here for the rest of my life I can just forget about the US, and I had to leave abruptly since I could feel tears threatening imminently. It's been very sudden and really depressing – I want to go home so badly it hurts. I know I need to find a family here, but frankly, having a family involves opening up and having obligations – things I've enjoyed not having to deal with since I got here. It's lonely, but I don't answer to anyone about my time. I didn't feel like leaving my house this afternoon after biking around all morning, so I didn't. I didn't have to tell anyone, or feel like I let someone down by not showing up, I just was able to sit and talk with people and read and take photos of the cats and set up my tent as the sun went down. It was so nice!
And, a week later, I'm convinced that both of the cats are boys. I'm going to keep calling him Sophie.