Saturday, November 23, 2013

Marriage in Lesotho

In order to get married in Basotho culture, men have to pay lebohla, which is 26 cows, to the bride's family. Here, my host brother, Tsepiso, is plowing one of the family plots.

   So you wanna marry me, eh?
   Well,  my host mama says you have to pay lebohla (leh-bo-la).
   Lebohla? The hell is that?
   It’s a “fee” men pay to a woman’s family in order to marry them; kind of like a dowry in India.
   Lebohla generally costs 26 cows, but 5 sheep are equal to one cow. Different families have different arrangements, though, depending on the type and quantity of animals they have.
   The Basotho believe that after the marriage, the women belong to the house. It is her job to keep the house clean. This role is clearly defined here, and women can’t negotiate household chores with their husbands like American women can.
   After marriage, a woman’s first and last name will change, too because that is also part of the culture.
   Still want to put a ring on me?
   Maybe you should just go listen to that famous Beyonce song insteadJ.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

You know you’re a Peace Corps Volunteer if (Part 2)

You know you're a PCV when everybody is ALWAYS overfeeding you. This is what my lunchbox looks like everyday. Everyday, y'all!! LOL!

As promised, here's the second part to my "You know you're a Peace Corps Volunteer if..." post. Read the first part here.

1. …If you get more visits from rodents and insects like mice and spiders than other volunteers.
1. …If you consider it a productive day when you’ve updated your blog.
3. …If your heart melts when your host siblings unexpectedly say an English word you taught them.
4. …If you’ve missed fast and reliable Internet just as much as you’ve missed your mommy.
5. …If you get random kilos when your students see you around the village. (A kilo is a form of positive reinforcement used by many teachers here. To do it, you scream "KILO!!" And then you clap six times and they point to a student while saying, "Whoooh!")
6. …If you’ve read an entire book while waiting for a taxi to fill up and leave.
7. …If you’ve forgotten your American name because you’re so used to responding to your Sesotho name.
8. …If you’re used to being called Lekhooa. (This means foreigner/white person in Sesotho.)
9. …If you went insane when you’re Blackberry or smart phone Internet service stopped working.
10.  ..If you’ve missed your car just as much as you’ve missed your dad.

Have any to add? Do so in the comments section.