It all started when I got my invitation packet to serve in Uganda in the Peace Corps (okay, it really started a few weeks later when I began preparing for the adventure of a lifetime after accepting said invitation, but that doesn’t really matter). My mom and I went to the outlet mall in Orlando; formerly called the Bellz Outlet mall (the current name escapes me at the moment). I have a fairly organized list of things I’m looking for, including Uganda-appropriate clothes and some duffel bags for my trip. While browsing the outlet mall, we pass a shoe store. Now, getting new flip flops was on my mind but I hadn’t made it a priority so I didn’t really think to enter in the establishment, but my mom, being the smart woman she is, thought we should go have a look. I was looking for the Sanuk Yoga Mat flip flops, recently purchased by a friend who had nothing but positive things to say about them. After seeing them and testing them out, I thought they were awesome, until I saw the price. They were definitely more than I was willing to pay, or allow my mother to pay, for a pair of flip flops (the exact price escapes me but I’m super cheap so judge away), but my mother insisted (and it turned out it was buy one get one half off, big day). So, I brought my not one, but TWO pairs of new flip flops home and started wearing them (let me tell you, it’s like you’re walking on clouds). I immediately became attached, never wanting to let these gifts from the gods go (hence I only wear them inside my house because I don’t want to wear them out fast nor do I want them to break).
Fast forward 8 months (holy cow) to the present day, in Rakai, Uganda, East Africa.
Me and my new best friends (the flip flops) are hanging out, minding our own business, talking to my mom on the phone, when from the corner of my eye I spot a hornet on the door of my house (I am on my veranda enjoying the sunset while on the phone). I decide it wouldn’t be a bad idea to nip this hornet problem in the bud, so I take off one of my flip flops and try to squish it. When my flip flop is about the make contact, the hornet flies off the door at my face, causing me to jump back and throw my flip flop at the bee. The next thing I know, I see my flip flop falling down the steep slope beyond my veranda towards a path down below, where it got stuck on a branch on the slope (please note that the slope is probably less than 5 feet down and the path is easily accessible so it wouldn’t have been a problem if the flip flop fell on the path). Initially I think I can manage my way down this mini-slope to retrieve the fallen friend, but I soon realize injury would only be inevitable (keep in mind I’m still on the phone with my mom). I wander about my veranda for a few seconds, find a long stick, and try to catch the flip flop on it, to no avail. I explain the situation to my mom and tell her I’ll call her back. Luckily at the point one of my neighbors is around and I instantly solicit his help (where I was met with laughter). Luckily, after my neighbor stopped laughing hysterically, he managed to retrieve my friend. When he returned it, he started laughing all over again. I am fairly sure he will be reminding me of this idiocy for days to come (however, given the comfort of these particular flip flops, it was and will continue to be completely worth it).
Feel free to judge and mock. It’s only to be expected.