February 15, Day 564
The pups wake me up at 7:30 am, so I let them out to run around in the yard and then climb back into bed. Dijo follows me back for cuddles, and then all the dogs follow along, too. We lay in bed and I administer belly rubs while Lulu puts her head on the bed to make sure she’s included.
Okay, Lulu. You get lovin’, too.
Today, I invited Kesh and her daughter to come over and swim at the pool. I also invited Catherine and her daughter Anaya to come by. So, I get up and shower and make eggs and coffee.
Give the pups their breakfast of ground meat and phaleche.
Sit on the couch and watch TV while the dogs stare at me hoping for food. Sorry, pups, you got your own breakfast you don’t get to eat mine.
Get dressed and grab my bike to ride to the store and grab some snacks for the pool party. It’s a really hot day today and the breeze feels good as I ride my bike into town.
I don’t like to lock up my bike in front of the grocery store because I think it will give the perception to people that I am wealthy or leave it exposed for people to tamper with it. So, I always take it across the street to the dirt road next to the spice store and lock it on the fence under the tree.
As I approach with my bicycle, three construction workers next to the dirt road stare at me.
“Dumelang, borra,” I say, acknowledging that I can see them staring. (Hello, gentlemen).
“Dumela, Mma,” one of the men says. “That is a nice bicycle, you should give it to me.”
“If I give you my bicycle, then I won’t have a bicycle and I won’t be able to have transport!” I reply, as I lock up my bike under the tree.
“So you are going to leave your bicycle here? What if it is stolen?” He asks.
“Well you are here to watch it,” I say.
“What if I steal it?” He replies.
“I trust you, you won’t steal it,” I say.
All of the men break out in laughter as I walk away.
In the store I pick up some chips and soda to serve as snacks. I run into my friend Wakgotla and invite him to swim in the pool. He says he can’t swim, and I tell him that’s fine. I used to be a lifeguard and a competitive swimmer, so I can save him if there’s a problem. But as long as he stays in the shallow end and while I’m nearby, there won’t be a problem.
Cool! He says he’ll come by.
Buy the things, and when I walk back to the dirt road I find that my bike is still there and wasn’t stolen. I wave to the guys as I strap the bags to the back of my bike and ride back to Thomas and Hanlie’s house.
The pups are thrilled that I’m home and greet me with licks and barks.
Catherine calls and says that she won’t be able to come today, but Anaya still wants to swim. I tell her that’s okay; I’ll play with her in the pool. She drives Anaya over and drops her off.
“Anaya needs to put sunblock on and I told her Auntie Abbie knows how to do it. Can you put the sunblock on her?” She asks.
“Yes, no problem,” I say.
Catherine leaves Anaya changes into her swimsuit and I help her put sunblock on. As it soaks in, Kesh arrives with her daughter Mokabo and a neighborhood friend. Kesh is new to the village, so I thought she would enjoy making friends and going for a swim on a hot day.
Wakgotla arrives, too, and we all jump in the pool together in the shallow end. I show the girls how to float and kick their legs. And then we practice me holding each one and taking them to the deep side of the pool and holding them up while they kick.
“Abbie do the boat thing! I want the boat thing!” Kesh’s daughter says.
I realize the boat thing is me taking her to the deep end. Apparently correlates floating to being a boat. So true and so smart!
So, we spend the day doing the boat thing and playing in the pool. I get out and put out snacks for everyone and the girls race one another across the pool.
Soon I realize it’s 7 pm and I’m supposed to facetime with Colden today for Valentine’s Day so we can make heart shaped pizzas together.
Yikes! The girls pack up, and Wakgotla packs up, too and they head out. The power goes out, so I find that my cell phone isn’t working to call Catherine to tell her to collect Anaya. So, I let Anaya sit and watch a movie on my laptop and eat some snacks while we wait for the power to go back on.
Eventually, Catherine decides to come by and pick up Anaya without getting my call, realizing we don’t have electricity.
In fact, before I even saw Catherine arrive at the house, I saw her gigantic great dane dog named Dawggie running down the street. Soon I realize that it’s because he is running next to her car and chasing her, and I see her car arrive in the driveway.
I pack up Anaya and give her a big hug.
“I’m going to come again tomorrow! That was fun, Auntie Abbie!” She says.
Go inside and play with the dogs for a bit and take a shower. Call Colden, and we facetime and catch up with one another’s day. For Valentine’s Day I sent him a heart shaped pizza for delivery. So, he stays on the phone while I make mine from scratch and then we eat together.
We chat for a bit, and then I hang up so I can go to bed. The pups and I all crawl into bed, Lulu by our side, and we all fall asleep together.