Getting Counted/Malaria

So, it has been a loooong time since we blogged, and we apologize for that!

This week the Sudan wide census started.  This is a census taking place in both the North and the South of Sudan (the first in almost 30 years) in order to get accurate population numbers for the upcoming referendum next year and then for the South Sudan vote on whether to become a separate country or whether to stay as a part of the whole Sudan in 2011.  There were many obstacles and problems with the start of this process, and this week actually marks the second week in a row where the census is officially starting (it officially started last week as well, but was then quickly called off).  I have strong opinions about the census and the way it has been handled, but they are not the type of thing I would post on a public blog for anyone to see (you never know who is monitoring you)!

So 2 days ago the census started all over the country and census takers could be found all over the place.  When the census takers came to our compound they tracked all of us non-Sudanese down and counted us as well!  It is a curious thing being counted in a census when you are not a permanent resident…I have this fear that I am going to lose my US citizenship for being counted in another country’s census!

So, the other part of this blog is about my current state.  I have malaria.  It sucks.  You can really understand how things can take so long to get done on this continent once you have had malaria.  You are weakened beyond belief and your body just aches all over…you have massive convulsions of shivering and remain cold even with 2 blankets and sweatpants/shirt on….then you start sweating like a sieve….it isnt fun.  While you can never really know how/when you get malaria (it can lay in your system a while before kicking in) I have an idea of why it happened this week.  On Monday I took a long car ride to a part of the country to the south of us.  On our return trip we found ourselves stuck between 3 semis in front and in back, with no option to drive around.  It was quite late already so we had to make a quick decision…we grabbed our bags and started walking (I had called another car to start coming towards us…it would take the car at least an hour to get to us, so walking would definitely help cut the time).  It was muddy and it was raining…an hour in the cold rain.  I am pretty sure that this walk demolished my immune system and the next day…Malaria!

Anyways, that is it from Brian’s world…I am sure Bethany will be adding something more eloquent and beautiful soon!