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Echo’s Travel Diary

Monday, 20 Aug 2007

Location: Gambia

MapGreat news. I got a house! I signed the lease so now I am locked in for the next two years in this great house. I wish I had pictures but I want to take some when the house gets painted so you can see it but for now I will only provide a mental picture. Plus there is something that I need to tell you all here. The internet here sucks. One of the only complaints I have to till now. Gone are the days of wireless, they don't have it and they don't even really have high speed, right now it is only dialup. But enough about that, back to my house.

It is a corner house, which I am not sure is a good or bad thing but I only have neighbours on two sides and right now my neighbour is my landlord, a retired guy who has a great sense of humour. In my yard, I am apparently growing Cassava (a root type thingy to eat), which was planted by the landlord but he is going to share it with me. I also have two banana trees, a lime tree and an orange tree. The avocado tree is in the landlords yard so I with have to barter with limes, and he just cut down the mango tree. Sounds pretty good already hey?

The house is a very nice white house with blue trim around the windows, and doors and maybe the roof. When you walk in through the front door you are in the living room with the kitchen off to the right at the back of the house. Right now my kitchen is in the process of being sledgehammered as I asked the landlord to renovate it before I moved in. The cabinets were all made out of cement and they were quite outdated and sketchy looking. I liked the outside look of them but inside was just nasty so he agreed and he is remodeling for me. I described what I wanted it to look like and so I just have to give him the measurements of the stove and fridge and the cabinets will be built. He is also going to install a bar like counter top too for me to divide the kitchen and living room from each other.

On the other side of the living room is a curved wall, which hides the door to the other part of the house. When you round the curved wall there is a storage room straight ahead of you, bedroom on your left, bathroom to the right of the storage room and beside that the master bedroom. I don't think the master bedroom is any bigger than the other one but I think that this is where my room will be. All of the walls are white, which is nice cause I am going to have so many African decorations and stuff. The floors are all tiled, which is okay as most people donít take their shoes off inside the houses. I do cause it is habit and it is more comfortable but carpets would get dirty and gross pretty quick. So that is it my little house. It really isn't that little though and seriously if I was in Calgary right now and rented something like that it would cost me probably around $1500. Here I bartered him down from 75000 dalasis to 70000 dalasis for the year. That is about the equivalent of $3000.00, if the dollar stays where it is. You also have to pay for the whole year upfront too, which is kind of funny so this week the school is going to cut a check and then I will get the keys. Now I just have to find furniture.