Charles Taylor convicted on all 11 counts of war... →
Happy Independence Day, Sierra Leone!
So because I haven’t really explained it, here’s the living situation here: I have two homes, one at Njala University (in the middle of Sierra Leone, near Bo), and one in the village of Pujehun (in the Eastern part of Sierra Leone, near Not a Whole Hell of a Lot). At Njala, I stay at Professor Bashiru Koroma’s house, which is on the campus and pretty sweet. I’m usually...
And now a diversion about goats
Am I the only person in the world who thinks that goats are absolutely revolting? Not their appearance—they are perfectly cute and all—but their smell. Goats have a distinctively goaty smell that permeates any and all products associated with them. Goat milk—tastes like goat smell. Goat cheese—tastes like goat smell. Goat meat—tastes like goat smell. Goat manure—smells like goat. By...
Whoa it's almost May
This whole thing is going really fast. I can’t believe it’s almost the end of April. Today I briefly took stock of what I’ve done so far, and while on the one hand I feel like I’ve done nothing, on the other hand I’ve learned way more than I did in my first 6 weeks of field work in El Salvador. So there’s that. I have a pretty sound (I think) and probably overambitious research plan established,...
I love mail
So, you guys can send me mail at: Meryl Olson c/o Kari Foley P.O. Box 160 Kenema, Sierra Leone Stuff that’s awesome: Canned chicken Tuna packets Chocolate Letters Vegetable seeds (I’m planting a garden near my house) Books to read during downtime, or books to read to kids (preferably Afro-centric or at least not about things like riding in cars or eating ice cream or other...
It being Easter Monday, no work was done in all of Sierra Leone yesterday. I decided to take the day off as well, and went to River Number 2 beach, reputed to be the most beautiful beach in Sierra Leone. Despite being packed like Hampton Beach on July 4 (haaaay New Hampshire-ites), it lived up to its reputation. Photos to come.
Chiefdom map of Sierra Leone →
This map shows the districts and chiefdoms of Sierra Leone. The campus of Njala University where I am located is in Kori chiefdom, Moyamba district. Pujehun village is in Kpeje Bongre chiefdom, Kailahun district (NOT in Pujehun district).
About the villages
To give you some geographic reference point, the villages where I am doing field work are in Kailahun District, the easternmost district in Sierra Leone. Sierra Leone is divided into three provinces (Northern, Southern, and Eastern), which are further divided into districts. The districts are then further divided into chiefdoms, which are headed by sets of chiefs. The districts are also divided...
In Which I Actually Write a Blog Post
I can’t believe I’ve already been here over a month. Blog posting for the past 3 weeks was hindered by several factors: Electricity or lack thereof. In the villages, the only means of charging laptops is a generator. The generator is stationed at the OneVillage Partners house in Jokibu (about 1 mile from Pujehun, where I live), where Kari has been kind enough to let me charge my laptop when she...