Sanitation Saga

It only took 6 weeks, but I am now the owner of both a toilet and shower room. I know, I know, you can go ahead and be jealous.
While peace corps provides the communities the volunteers, the communities they live in provide the housing. In Madagascar this means a house, or room in a house, a place to shower, a toilet, and a fence.
As I was getting ready to move to site I learned my shower and toilet weren’t ready yet. I was told this wouldn’t be a problem and I arrived at site with the materials needed to finish the job. My installer talked with my host mom and members of the community and was told everything would be ready in a few days when he passed back through.
A few days pass and a little progress was made, but things were still unfinished. In case you were wondering I used my neighbour’s facilities during this time. We were once again assured things would be done soon. Soon, it turns out, is fairly relative.
First the workman took the money and stopped working. Then a second workman was hired. Pentecost came and went resulting in no work and then the second workman failed to show up, just like the first.
Fast forward a few weeks and I’ve been at site one month and things still aren’t finished. I can’t get a straight answer out of my host mom as to where the workman is. She asks everyday if he’s shown up, but the answer is no.
Eventually, during a visit from Peace Corps, things finally seemed to be settled. More cement is bought and I’ve been given money to pay the workman and instructions not to return to site until things are finished. Fast forward another 5 days and I return to site to find that it’s actually done! I’m not sure I’ve ever been so happy to see a hole in the ground.
I don’t know the exact cost of everything, but based on the things I know where purchased I might have the most expensive toilet in Madagascar.
Now onto fixing the fence…


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