INS AND OUTS
I was recently pondering the "ins" and "outs" of our new life in Lima. In any major transition, there are losses and gains. Some staples become altogether absent. While foreign experiences become regular occurrences. As I considered our "ins" and "outs," I discovered that what has been added to our life through our move to Lima and, more specifically, through our involvement in Santa Rosa is worth far more than the conveniences that have been subtracted.
An Abundance of Dogs
Though we do not own a dog, our kids have adopted several (close to ten) strays in Santa Rosa. Our kids beg us to buy treats for "their" dogs and have even named them. My favorite dog is "Lost," a brown and black mutt whom they now call "Found."
There is no running water in Santa Rosa. Water is purchased from a tanker that passes through honking its horn obnoxiously. The water is contained in large tanks that sit in front of each house. When water is needed for cooking or washing, it is carried, a bucket at a time, to wherever it is needed. (The blue bucket on the stool below is used to wash dishes.)
Lots of Sand
Lima is located in a desert, and when you get outside the city, the outlying towns are situated in undulating hills of sand. My kids are constantly covered in sand. We return from Santa Rosa with sand in our car, sand in our hair, sand in our shoes, as well as in other unmentionable places.
Flushing Toilets and Toilet Seats
With no running water, obviously there are no flushing toilets. The toilets, when there are toilets (in some places there are simply holes), are located outside the houses (outhouse style). Although the picture below shows a toilet seat, it was only put there temporarily to please the gringos (North Americans) who were visiting. They were immediately removed after their departure.
There are gorgeous views of the ocean, especially at sunset.
Light (natural and artificial)
Although I am told it is coming, one of the things that is currently "out" in Santa Rosa is electricity. We also forfeit the sun for over six months every year. The gray skies roll in in late May and dominate the sky, obscuring the sun, until mid-december. I had no pictures to illustrate the lack of electricity, but this picture depicts the sunless ambience of Lima during the winter.
Lot's of little friends
Our family has gotten a lot bigger since arriving in Lima. We now experience the joy of knowing over 30 kids who were previously not a part of our life. Their smiles, laughter, and energy fill our heart and challenge us to greater degrees of gratitude.