so i was lying in bed reading nelson mandela's autobiography and he is just about to be released from 27.5 years in prison when awa (one of the kids) hollers for me to come outside. ugh.
i begrudingly drag myself outside and there is beye (the kid i like the least -- he is spoiled, dirty, and quite rotten) standing there with his pants at his knees sucking on a lollipop with shit running down his legs. you have to be kidding me. i look around and there is absolutely nobody in sight as once again, i have been left alone at the compound to play reluctant babysitter so i guess i can either suck it up and do something about it or let the damn kid stand there with poop all over his legs until his mother gets back. i really don't like this kid so i was close to choosing the latter but i guess my more compassionate side came out and after cussing at him in english, i started the awful procedure of cleaning him up.
i just ran out of toilet paper the other day and since tp is a western novelty and luxury (that i've been trying to wean myself off of), i wasn't going to find any on this compound and would have to do this with my hand (left, of course) and water. iv'e seen what this kids eat -- everything, all the time -- so it's not like cleaning up baby poo or horse crap, this is legitimate nasty ass shit that is smelly, chunky, and sticky.
first, pants and shoes must go. i get no help from the dumb kid and his two sisters just stand there and watch. as soon as i grab a pant leg i realize that i've landed straight in poo. this is not going well and i just want to push the kid into the dirt and let him handle his own problems. i get his sandals and pants off finally and get a stick and try to scrape off the crap but really just manage to smear it around some more. i give up on the stick and decide to just use my hand already. it's an awful awful sensation to have to do this but i try to think that there are grosser things in life that i've done (but just can't seem to think of any) and that i can do this.
finally i remember that i have baby wipes! yes! i brought them from the states and was actually chastised for bringing them but little did anyone know that i would have to clean up kid poop, right?
hooray, the baby wipes work! i get to scrubbing him down and i'm on my third baby wipe when i hear my name being called. i forget my manners and don't even bother to finish my greetings and just yell out "CAN YOU HELP ME?!?" in comes our next door neighbor -- i shamefully don't remember her name -- and i flounder around for some words but thank god "poop" is the same thing in wolof (except spelled p-u-u-p) and she immediately gets it. she takes over for me and is twenty times more badass than me and doesn't hesitate to use her hands and to really get in there and clean the kid up.
to make the story even better (because it can always get worse even when i think it can't) a few hours later i'm sitting around with the women and dom, the baby i actually like a lot, had crawled into my lap and is sitting there gurgling away and all of a sudden all the kids are freaking out and dragging him off of me because lo and behold, he peed all over my lap.
just livin' the dream, folks. just livin' the dream.