Living in Bujumbura is interesting. We hear in the US to be thankful for what we have. But rarely do we actually feel it.
It wasn’t long before we realized that running water and electricity are luxury items in Burundi. At least a few times daily the electricity went out. Often at night we were huddled around candles either tucking the kids in for bed or playing a game. Some nights we were just cooking.
I wondered why the mission house had two stoves in it. One gas – one electric. I understood by day two why.
Here’s the interesting thing: By the end of our first week, we had acclimated to the electrical inconsistency. Without much conversation, we all just went for candles and got some light.
It’s interesting the things we take for granted. If I wanted to, I could make a long list of luxury items in my home that would be considered extravagances in Burundi. I’m grateful for the electricity and water not being reliable. It helps me not only understand what missionaries go through on a regular basis, but it also helps me appreciate the nice furniture I’m sitting in, reliable high-speed Internet, and persistent electricity and utilities. The next time we have a storm where everyone is bellyaching about their power being out for an hour, I’ll be thinking about something else – somewhere else.