Saturday, July 21, 2012

Hey, look at this thing I made.

Rainy season has begun in earnest, and that means long, damp afternoons spent in my hut, making tea, listening to podcasts, writing letters, and, most recently, sewing things. I've mended some tattered t-shirts, stitched up my mosquito net, hemmed some pants, and made a replacement pouch for my Diva Cup. (Most female PCVs here use menstrual cups because tampons and pads are not readily available. And also because they're pretty great.) It's been a long time since I sewed anything by hand, but I fussed around and pinned things together this way and that way and it came together eventually.

It was a challenge to make the stitching even, but I did remember to how to sew it inside out, line everything up, and measure it correctly. (Thanks Mom!) I was/am particularly proud of myself for making a functional drawstring to close it. Proud enough to show it to pretty much everyone who was hanging out at the Regional House, whether or not they had any interest in either arts & crafts or Diva Cups.

I also showed it to my host family; they were impressed, assumed it was a coin purse, and I didn't correct them. They also thought it was novel, a woman knowing how to sew. In Senegal tailors are almost exclusively male, and sewing is definitely considered a male activity. Not that anyone was offended, just a little amused, and now sometimes when someone on the compound needs help mending clothes or something they send a little kid to fetch me so I can come help, since I'm "very competent with the sewing."

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