Thursday, April 30, 2015


(By Stephanie)

I learned a new word in Kirundi this week Imbeba. Imbeba is rat or mouse, the language doesn’t differentiate, but I certainly do.  For the animal I saw running full force towards me along the kitchen counter was most certainly a huge, hideous rat, not a cute little mouse, who admittedly would still be unwanted, yet not seem quite so disgusting.  

So in light of trying to be grateful in all circumstances here’s my gratefulness around the rat:

I am grateful the electricity has been on in the evenings this week, so I could first spot and then be on guard against the rat. 

I am grateful for whomever installed the door between our kitchen and living room which I was able to slam shut and contain the rat. 

I am grateful for guards who, upon my request, searched my kitchen for the rat (but they didn’t find him). 

I am grateful I was able to bring a bit of laughter into our guards night with my reaction to seeing a rat. 

I am grateful it was a rat and not a bat or a snake. 

I am grateful that I am now less bothered by the cockroaches, ants and termites that reside in our kitchen because I see them as less bothersome than a rat. 

I am grateful that it has taken 8 months of living in this house and hearing much movement of rats and skinks in our ceiling before one has found it’s way down into our house.  

Back in November Greg and I were awakened by an earthquake. It wasn’t very strong and didn’t last very long. Greg later told me that his fear during the quake was the prospect of the ceiling collapsing. The ceiling wouldn’t crush us, as it’s not very heavy, but the thought that terrified him was picturing all the rats that would land on us. 

So, after seeing the size of the rat in our kitchen, I am even more grateful that the ceiling held together during the earthquake. 

Our rat is still at large, but we have neither spotted him, nor any further evidence of his presence in our house. For this, I am also quite grateful! 


  1. love this post steph! had me laughing outloud!

  2. Interesting. There are a lot of things that you coexist with in your surroundings. Sadly, pests are some of those things. I'm happy that you are being an optimist amid all this, though that rat does need to be taken care of. Good luck!

    Debra Owen @ Invader