For the last month I have been living in Odede, a remote Kenyan village, as a team leader for a group of volunteers, although my experiences in the village are not what this blog is about.  The team I was leading – Team Kubadilisha – was entirely female, 9 to be exact and living with 9 females for a month proved to be far more of a cultural learning experience than living in a Kenyan village…

Chocolate

Women love chocolate.  They don’t just love it, they crave it, desire it, yearn for it, adore it, lust for it and fantasise about it.  This is especially so when a group of them live together in a remote 3rd world village.  Despite eating it almost every day, those I lived with could not get enough of it.  And you may think that because of the setting, any old chocolate would do – no!  Plain is simply not good enough,

‘Plain is that it?  Is there no Fruit ‘n’ Nut or Caramel or Rum ‘n’ Raisin?’

‘No, just plain,’

‘Ok then, plain will do I guess,’

Chocolate comes a close second to Paw Paw cream, I don’t think I have met a girl yet who does not own a tub of that stuff.  And they put it everywhere on their bodies – maybe someone should invent chocolate flavoured Paw Paw cream…

Small = cute

I was aware of this female rule well before my time in Odede, however I never realised the extent of how EVERYTHING which is small is cute, especially everything in Africa.  I can understand babies and small children being cute, especially black babies, and there is no doubt this is cute…

And I guess these are also cute…

But I never expected the soppy faced, droopy eyed, go ga-ing reaction for a bucket.  This crusty old yellow (yet small) bucket got almost the same reaction to a small child when it was first spotted by the cute patrol, ‘Aww, wook at da widdle buckey, it’s so cute!’ – It’s a bucket, can it really be cute?  Apparently so.

Isn’t that just the cutest bucket you have ever seen?

Females are just as dirty as males

I mean this is two ways, verbally and physically.  If you simply replace ‘dick’ with ‘budge’, va jay jay’, ‘minj’ or any other word you can think of, well, females talk about them just as much, if not more, than guys talk about their dicks.  There is nothing quite like a day of discussing period pains over breakfast, periods over lunch and the benefits of waxing or shaving over dinner – it is quite an education.

Now, physically, while females may have a problem with men leaving dirty socks, cups or dishes around, if you replace socks/cups/dishes with ‘baby wipes’ there is no issue.  Apparently there is nothing wrong with leaving used baby wipes on the dining table, couches or in communal areas.

Analysis

Most men have, or should have, some idea that women analyse things to the point of exhaustion, however I never heard such an in depth conversation about what to wear on the plane home.  I never realised the vast array of factors one has to consider.  Men, this should prepare you for the next time you are about to take a flight and are fretting about what to wear…

First of all, I don’t want to look like I have come straight from Africa, because I don’t want people to be thinking ‘Oh look at them, they look they have come straight from Africa!’, I want to look nice because what if the man of my dreams, aka Ryan Gosling, ends up sitting next to me on the flight?  But it gets cold on planes, so I need something warm, but then it is hot here in Africa, so I don’t want wear something heavy and sweat too much before I get on the plane, because what if Ryan Gosling is on the flight and I’m smelly?  My god, I would just die!  But I’ll be sitting for a long time, so I really need something comfortable, but also something that looks good, but I also have to consider what the weather will be when I get home, because it is hot here and cold on the plane, so I’ll have to be prepared for everything…

And that goes on and on and on for hours…

Objectification

Women objectify men just as much as men objectify women.  They may not want to admit it, but they are just as bad.  All the stars were aligned on this one.  9 girls, living together, no boyfriends and working with a bunch of buff African tradesman (and of course me, though I am neither buff, nor African, nor a tradesman).  The amount of times I heard about the Old Spice guy, I was amazed the girls did not want to do overtime every single day.

The Old Spice guy, who I’m sure has a name, but that would only be a minor detail…

Man, I feel like a woman

Women love ‘feeling like a woman’.  Shania Twain was right on the money with that song.  There is nothing a woman likes more than having freshly shaved legs, freshly shampooed hair and clean nails.  They love it so much that they will rub each others legs to compare the smoothness – and invite you to as well.  I cannot remember ever shaving or shampooing and then calling my mates over to rub my face or have them run their fingers through my hair – I may not have any friends left if I did ask them…

The rest of my time in Odede included butchering a goat, working with makeshift wooden scaffolding, riding a tractor to work, a rooster for an alarm clock, drop toilets and bucket showers – all on reflection, perfectly normal, when compared to the above behaviours… but even though ladies are gaga you wouldn’t want to live without them 🙂

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