The views expressed herein are mine and not those of the Peace Corps.



Useful Acronyms

PC Peace Corps
ICT Information & Communications Technology
PCT Peace Corps Trainee (pre-swearing-in)
PCV Peace Corps Volunteer (post-swearing-in)
PST Pre-Service Training
CBT Community-Based Training

Shida ya viazi

One of the things I was happiest to receive in the bag my parents sent to me was a very nice potato masher, the one we’d been using at home for the past couple years. I felt guilty for depriving them of such a good potato masher but at the same time was very pleased to have it.

Today I decided to use the potato masher; I boiled my sweet potatoes, mixed in powdered milk and margarine…but the potato masher wasn’t there.

It had been in a container of other tall cooking implements: chapati roller, spatula, breadknife, that was sitting in front of the window until the second time someone stole bread out of the window, at which point I moved it to remove temptation.

Looking back, the potato masher wasn’t in the container when I moved it. Temptation had already been given in to, and my potato masher had disappeared.

The disappearances of the bread left me disappointed, and sad, but that someone stole my potato masher makes me downright angry! Bread can be rationalized–he or she was hungry. My emotions were diminished by the fact that it was pretty terrible bread. But there is no conceivable reason for someone to steal my potato masher besides a desire to mess with me. I think I know what student did it, and I think she knows that I know, but there’s nothing I can do besides keep the window closed and be rude to her. And mash potatoes with a fork.


Comment from Annie
Time February 16, 2009 at 7:49 pm

Maybe instead of being rude to the student you could make an extra effort to be nice to her and make her feel guilty enough to give the potato masher back. Cause that’s a really good masher. We had potatoes the other day, but we had to mix them in the mixer because we, too, are now masherless.

Comment from Jan
Time February 18, 2009 at 11:58 am

Hi Marie,

I am truly disgusted by what is happening to you, and feel like coming over there to sort them out! You will now have to be so very careful of your things, as it seems you are an easy target. This is ridiculous and so unfair, I will be doing something about it you can be sure of that!

Take care, we love you and are thinking of you. Two parcels will be sent to you from us as soon as I get your address from your Mum again. I have lost it somewhere in our house and just can’t find it, nuts I say.

love, Jan.

Comment from Ron
Time February 18, 2009 at 7:40 pm

A possible suggestion re: potato masher theft: Write the fact that it was taken on the blackboard if there is one, or announce the theft in the class in which the suspected culprit is a student, while asking for any information anybody might have as to its whereabouts. (Of course nothing accusatory.) Who knows, somebody else may know something about it.

Possible downside: might be broadcasting the idea you are vulnerable.

Good luck dealing with this.

Hope things improve


Uncle Ron

Comment from Mair
Time March 8, 2009 at 12:52 pm

Hi Marie – I go with Uncle Ron’s suggestion. And also maybe an added incentive that when the masher reappears, you will show them all what you do with it and have a mashed potato party in class. One thing that Mr. Obama has impressed me with is a certain habit of mind with which he can turn adversity upside down. Think upside down thoughts and your masher will return.

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