The last couple weeks our toilet has been giving us trouble and we don’t have a plunger. We finally broke down today and went roaming around our neighborhood and the next neighborhood over for a small hardware store. All the shops here in our area are set up like small shops operated out of people’s garage/basement. I went to the corner store and asked our friends who work there about plungers and how I could find one. They weren’t really following my description so I said in Narnian “You know when the poop and water gets stuck, you have to go like this. . . “” And then I motioned like I was violently using a plunger. They knew instantly and sent me to the next neighborhood over. I did not have a street name, area of that neighborhood or anything. I simply knew that there could possibly be a hardware store in an area that consists of several hundred houses with dozens of people operating shops from their garages.

So we took off up the hill and about every 2 or 3 minutes we would stop at a shop and ask which which direction the hardware store may be. Everybody kept telling us the same direction so we felt good about it. After about 10 minutes or so, we arrived at a busy area with lots of shops. There was a small shop with hardware-looking things so I began to explain to the female shop owner what I wanted. She wasn’t catching it, so I again gave my phenomenal Narnian language description. . . “You know, sometimes the poop gets stuck inside the toilet and you have to use this. You go like this.” (again motioned like a crazy, mad guy trying to fix the toilet with the plunger.) Several teenage girls and a handful of primary school students gathered around us laughing at my description. They were embarrassed for me and also disappointed that they did not know the English word “plunger” that I attempted to use only briefly. They, being great Narnians, had 2 small boys (probably aged 4 or 5) lead us about 50 yards to a place that sells plungers.

When we arrived at what would be the final destination, I again told my whole poop being stuck story and they instantly hooked me up with a plunger that cost a dollar. All the way back down the road filled with houses and with the folks who led us to our destination. I felt like we were carrying the Olympic torch and our new friends were so happy that they helped us out. Janessa says we were greeted by their smiles of satisfaction. I even stopped back in the second store where I got all the teenagers laughing at me and said, “We found it. Thanks a lot!”

One of my favorite things about Narnians and living here is how incredibly helpful people can be. We would have had every single person along the road walk us to the plunger place if we needed them to. Though this is the city and people are very busy, I love that neighbors feel like neighbors and going plunger shopping doesn’t feel lonely. The simplest of things are meaningful when done with a community.

In the end the toilet was fixed and we lived happily ever after. Fun times in Narnia just living life.

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