The Nicaraguan ABCs: D is for


I scratch my sweaty arm and my fingernails are full of it.  When I blow my nose, my boogers are usually brown.  It's in my hair, it's in the water tank, it's leaves muddy lines from my sandals on my feet, it's most definitely all over the floors, it's on the sheets, in the rugs, settling on the fans, and it's probably in my lungs.

The floors in our home are concrete, but not the smooth kind; they're the rough sidewalk kind.  It's so hard to sweep and clean.  It's hard to respect the floor like an indoor floor.  The whole house kinda feels like we're living in a garage, to be honest.  I felt so defeated by the floor, that I ignored it.  That's a great way to deal with the problem of extremely dirty floors, huh?  Just ignore 'em.  The house is full of holes and cracks that lead to the exterior elements, so the dust and the trash (even a bandana?!) will just blow in off the street again, so what's the point?
Well, then Brad & Amy Means were coming.  We've been really excited about their showing up here, to say the least.  They're also LEI missionaries and we did some ESL stuff together back in college, plus we were crammed in the car with them for a week-long road trip earlier this year, so we're pretty tight.  Anyway, now they're joining us in Rio Blanco on behalf of LEI to help receive short-term teams this month.
Sooo...just before they rolled into town, I rolled up my sleeves (figuratively speaking), and my pants (literally speaking), and went to battle with this concrete dirt pile we temporarily call home.

I asked a local friend how I should clean the floor and she said "Sweep and then throw water down and sweep some more."  Well, alright then.

I swept and swept until I had blisters on both hands.  Wow.  Uh.  Yeah, that was definitely something I should've done sooner.  Velloso's hair was apparently becoming a carpet-layer over the concrete.  My dirt-pile looked like we'd just sheared a sheep.

Then I got a big bucket of water with smell-good sanitizer, and some bleach for good measure, and threw it all over the floors.  It was kinda liberating being able to throw all that water all over the floor inside the house!  Then I swept some more.

I thought it'd be such a waste of time, because of the way dirt gets lodged in all those little rough crevices of the concrete, but the floors actually felt much cleaner after all that work.  Probably should do it every week from now on, but that would only happen if I were super woman.  So it's probably only gonna get cleaned like that once a month.  Or every other month. for English


  1. You are so cool! I cannot stop laughing thinking about you and the bucket of water (with sanitizer AND bleach). You are a STRONG woman, Em. So proud of your walk, so proud of you. Still laughing, but so impressed with all that you are getting accomplished. Love you bunches. XOXOXOXOXO


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