11-12 Housing, or how two houses turned into no houses

We are going to have two houses. Sometime. Eventually. Maybe. We hope. Right now, we have no houses.

We arrived in Melsisi, knowing that the house in Vansemakul isn’t finished, only to find out that the house in Melsisi needs repairs and we can’t move in. In fact, the house in Melsisi needed to have its septic tank emptied, which was done on Monday, and then it needs a new toilet. The old one was leaking. The shower leaks as well and the screens on the windows all need to be replaced. At this point, I’m trying to convince the headmaster to give us the leftover paint from the school and let us paint the inside of the house, too. It’s sort of a mess. We keep hearing next week, when the toilet gets in, we’ll have a house.

We’ve been hearing “in a few days” for a few days about the house in Vansemakul. I’m not quite clear about what is going on with that one, except that it isn’t finished. Latest reports tell me we don’t have a toilet or a swim house and other reports say there is no kitchen. I haven’t actually been to Vansemakul yet, since I have no place to stay and there are more than enough things to explore and do here in Melsisi.

You might at this point be wondering where we are staying if it isn’t in our house in Melsisi or in Vansemakul. If you had to choose the most unlikely place for Jason and I to stay, you might be close to right. We are staying in a convent. That’s right, manly, atheistic Jason is living with nuns. Well, one nun. We are actually staying with two volunteers from the United Kingdom who are here for the school year to teach English. They are living with the nun because their housing fell through, so we got put with them because we are all white. We, that is the 4 of us, share the bottom floor with the housegirl for the convent and the nun has the upper floor to herself. She’s living the high life by standards of Vanuatu, she’s got 6 rooms and a kitchen, all of them in a permanent structure.

Here is hoping we get a real house and can stop living out of a suitcase sometime soonish.

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