Teenage Boys Peeking Through My Windows

January 20, Day 538
Someone knocks on my front door at 7 am. I’m still sleeping and it’s way too early to entertain.

Get out of bed. There’s no power or water again.

Go into the living room and listen to some Sade and cook breakfast.

Make lunch.

Not in the mood to take a bath from old stored container water this morning, so I skip it and decide to bath when I get home later.

Load up my backpack and ride to BOCAIP and check in with Baitshepi. She works in a small trailer, where she does HIV testing and counseling. There is also an event hall building next to the trailer that is usually empty. We meet in her office and catch up on the projects I am working on.

I go into the event hall and start working on one of the tables. Suddenly, a car pulls up next to the building and I see Mr. Kole from the Men’s Sector walk towards the building.

He’s asking about how to fill out the activity report for the DAC office. Every quarter, they have to fill out an activity report. Every quarter, people claim not to have ever heard of the activity report. Every quarter, Catherine shows them how to fill it out. Then the next quarter, they forget how to fill it out and claim they’ve never seen it.

I tell him I’ll send him the template and show him how to fill it out.

Kole leaves, and Baitshepi comes to join me in the event hall and we work together. I show her the most recent PEPFAR presentation about HIV in Botswana.

My counterpart from the Media Production club is supposed to come during lunch, so I wait for him.

And wait.

And wait.

He doesn’t show. I work through lunch and eat while I work. Finally, my counterpart texts and says he was called for a last minute meeting at the hospital and won’t make it. Cool.

Walk over to the DAC office, and Mabe is there. We are worried that the Valentine’s Dinner is coming up in a few weeks, and Tebelopele hasn’t done anything yet to organize it. The DAC office usually gives Tebelopele to organize the HIV testing event and they host it every year.

Walk over to Tebelopele and ask about the Valentine’s Dinner. The woman says she’ll call me tomorrow. Cool.

Walk to the Culture Centre to ask if I can use the space for movie night next month, but it’s closed. Cool.

Walk back to the DAC office and call Thutego at the hospital to ask if she has heard anything about Month of Youth Against AIDS. I’ve heard nothing, and usually we are supposed to organize it. She says she’s heard nothing. Cool.

Run into Baitshepi, and she gives me a ride back to BOCAIP. We work separately for an hour.

Bike home, sit on the couch to relax. It looks like it is about to rain. Woo hoo! It never rains in my village.

Then I see it.

An eyeball.

Then I realize there’s a face. And it’s looking through my living room window. THERE IS SOMEONE STARING AT ME IN MY LIVING ROOM.

WHAT THE F@%K?!

Go to my front door, and I find three teenage boys standing on my front porch when I look through the window. They look about 15 years old.

If I am one to guess, they were trying to look inside my house to see if I have electronics to steal.

“Dumela?” I say as I open my front door. The boys are startled.

“Dumela, Mme. Ke kopa metsi,” one of the boys says (Hello Ma’am, I would like some water).

“Sure, hang on.”

I close my front door so that they cannot see into my house, and then walk to the kitchen and get three glasses of water and bring it back to the boys. It starts raining.

As soon as they finish their glass of water and hand the glass back to me. That’s when I change my tone.

“Boys, next time you come to my house, you do not enter my gate. Do you understand?”

“Sorry?” one of the boys replies.

“When you come to my house, you do not enter the gate in the yard. You stand at the gate and call ko ko like everyone else does. I do not want you looking through my windows or hanging out on my porch. Please respect my privacy,” I say.

“Eh Mma,” they nod in agreement (yes, ma’am) and look embarrassed.

They walk off just as the skies open up and it is pouring rain. I sit on the porch and watch the rain for a few minutes.

Catherine calls and asks me to come over to her house. She has a friend who is trying to pay her wifi subscription bill and doesn’t know how. Catherine knows that I know how to navigate the website, so she asks me to come over and teach her.

Cool. I can bring her the cupcakes I made yesterday. I tell her I’ll come over when it stops raining and she says Freddie can come and pick me up. Cool. I bring some beads for Anaya so we can make friendship bracelets together.

Freddie arrives at the house and drives me to Catherine’s. She has her friend sitting in the living room, along with Auntie. Anaya is playing in her room and Catherine is feeding the baby in her bedroom.

Bring the cupcakes to Catherine, and then go help her friend navigate the Mascom website. Done. Cool.

Anaya and I sit on the floor in her room and I show her the beads and we make bracelets together. Love this little girl.

Catherine is laying on the floor eating the cupcakes and feeding the baby.

Go outside and give belly rubs to Dawgie. He’s a good boy.

Walk home. Sit on the couch and write for the rest of the evening.

Make dinner. Go to bed.

Boroko 🌙

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