Saturday, December 4, 2010

What is Normal?

What was once awkward, frustrating, unthinkable becomes normal
when one spends any length in Africa
bucket baths are what you look forward to,
electricity is hard to come by
and time is spent talking with friends is the best entertainment
here if you have a child, anyone in the village would take care of your baby whenever you feel like it - all the women in village are your potential 'tanti'
if you want to want to go see someone - friend, neighbor, colleague - there's no need to call beforehand, just stop on in (and feel free to make some joking cousins banter to ease the conversation)
In most cases when I visit people, I'm offered food where ever i go - and villagers don't take 'Im not hungry' for an answer
When I walk down the street, friends call out my name and wave along my whole route - not because I'm the mayor but because people look out for each other here
I wake with the sun, and go to bed with the moon (er, sometimes)
I am familiar with all things that crawl, fly, jump and slither and am not phased to find critters in unlikely places
weddings, baptisms, and all manner of festivities require being present -
there's no substitute for being present.

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