Life in Madagascar

Hello! I haven’t posted in a while, so I thought that I would take a few minutes to update you on my life here in Madagascar!

My mom, brother, and Tristan were here for a week. I had a blast! I’m so thankful that they got to come and see a little bit of my world. Saying goodbye definitely wasn’t easy though. I will see them again in a few months!

A lot of people ask me how Madagascar is, so instead of doing a normal “devotion” blog, I thought it would be fun to share a few fun facts and stories with you. Hopefully you will find it semi-interesting! 😉

– I mentioned in a FB status how I got distracted by a cow during a service at a Malagasy church. There obviously isn’t air condition, so the doors stay open. Hearing the cow chew his grass was too much of a distraction for this city girl! But seeing cows in the street is totally normal here. We have had to stop the car and let the cows cross. The other day, a car in front of us got hit by a cow who crossed the road.

-Speaking of this, there are tons of chickens who cross the road. Don’t ask me why! 😉 But what is neat is that everyone in the area knows whose chicken it belongs to and stealing another person’s chicken is definitely frowned upon. I have heard stories of people getting killed because they stole someone’s chicken(s).

– A white person is called a “Vaza” and it is used quite frequently especially when walking down the street. I hear it almost on a daily basis, mainly by some guy trying to get my attention or a Malagasy coworker greeting me.

– Being white, Malagasies assume I am French. My lack of French and my accent probably give it away pretty quickly that I am definitely not! I really wish I would have taken the language in high school!

– Cramming 30+ people into a “bus” (van) is totally normal. Getting up close and personal is a daily thing for people needing transportation I take it twice a week and it cost 300-400 ariary for each ride. This is about 10-13 cents in USD.

– It’s also very much a “walking” culture. I’ve actually grown to like the fact that I can walk from school to the grocery store or wherever without it being unsafe. People are everywhere!

– Rice, rice, and more rice! Malagasies eat rice for every meal. If they don’t have it, they don’t feel like they have eaten properly!

– The flooding here in Madagascar has devastated many people. It’s common to drive into town and see tents lined up on the side of the road because people’s homes are too flooded to live in. In order to get to their homes, they have to go by boat. It’s hard to imagine, but it’s reality for so many people.

– I will never complain about traffic in the States ever again. Potholes make driving somewhere a long, drawn out process! It has taken us 2 1/2 hours to get to our church during the week. On a Sunday, when less people are out, it takes about 40 min. It’s pretty crazy how 40 minutes begins to feel like a short drive! But with driving here, I have decided that the rule is, if there is even a small gap, take it. And if there’s not, make one. lol. The same thing applies to parking spaces. Just find a place!

Even with the craziness of traffic, being away from my family, and not having a Casa Ole… it’s all worth it. I look at this place and talk with these people, and I see such beauty. I have so much fun getting to know them and seeing their hearts. They are such givers and their worship is nothing short of amazing. I love seeing them walk down the streets on Sunday morning with their best clothes on, ready to give their best to God. It’s a place where people are so open and ready to receive the gospel.

Thanks so much for your prayers and support!

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