The Kinky Green

Gender Bender

Posted in Peace Corps Adventures by Joy on May 10, 2013

When I arrived, some of the boards had come loose in my be frame. Chama, our driver, asked my host for nails. When I retrieved a hammer & nails, all the dudes in my yard looked surprised. Chama said, “You’re well equipped.”
“I came to work.”
Next day I took my new saw to some planks & built a corner shelf for the wall of my storage area. Like all other manual labor, sawing is an acquired skill. I spent a good while making my cuts & acquired a reputation as an unlikely lady carpenter in so doing.


2 Responses to 'Gender Bender'

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  1. Joy said,

    Apparently, lady carpenters arew pretty much unheard of. Don’t get me wrong. Zambian women are bad-ass. They work hard & do it well. But there are strict gender roles in place for some things. Especially things that can earn money. ($=men’s work) Carpentry could be a prime example of that. At any rate, I’ve had to explain myself. “Where did you learn?” “My dad is a carpenter. He taught me.” I’ve drawn h2o, cooked, & sewed but haven’t swept my yard or cooked nsima yet. Bet they’re so confused!

  2. Sheena said,

    Sounds like the village folk are in for a treat!

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