Thursday, July 26, 2007

In Graduate School

I sometimes would hate life.

Here in Africa,
I sometimes feel sad and lonely,
but I never feel that I hate my life.

That makes me smile.

I love it here!

I am adopted

I feel like I have no roots.

I am connected to 30 years of life on this earth, but do not feel connected to anything older. My genetic makeup is my tradition. I have no cultural tradition. I am an outsider looking in, a reader doing research at the library.

No roots
No home

Am I burdened to forever wander, following me, for that is where my home is. I am my family.

Or does all of this have nothing to do with being adopted but has to do with age?

Am I in some common phase of life where 30 year olds think about their dreams, selfishly doing what they want following their hearts forsaking a life with family?

Lights Out

Thursday 18 July

When dark falls it is easy to fall asleep even it if is only 7:30 pm.

Dark is dark here.
It is hard to differentiate a 7 o'clock dark from a 11 o'clock dark.

Electricity and light fool the body to stay up past dark.

Dry Dirt

Wednesday 17 July

I have half an acre of land that I am planting using hand tools. A student plowed my land with a donkey while I was away.

Yesterday I planted peanuts and corn. Today beans.

I love physical labor feeling the sweat drip off of me like right after a cool bucket bath.

My 6 blisters hopefully will turn into calluses today rather than popped open sores.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

When it rains

my yard turns into an
endless gigantic puddle.

Nice Damon is constructing
an elevated walkway from my
front door to the latrine
using clay and flat river rocks
that we collect daily strapping to our bikes.

He is so nice, isn't he?


Food is scarce.
People are planting.
Our diet consists of
noodles, oil, and onions
plus some yummy Nong Shim Shin Ramyun
a friend's sister so thoughtfully sent.


I live outside, sleep, eat, read, and write outside.
But tonight the rain drove us inside.

Inside is scary.

Winged wispy bugs as long as a pinkie
and a HUGE rat plump as a grapefruit
who wanted to go outside
but the screen door kept him on our side.

I did not scream.

And then an exclamation from Damon of "cute"
a pea-sized frog that Damon helped outside as he did with the rat.

What will the rest of the night bring?

a lime sized frog crawling up the screen door
a turtle swimming in the newly formed pond of a yard

to see or not to see?
which is better?
kerosene lamp on or off?


Saturday July 7

My writing has taken a hit.

Africa, life au village, provided the perfect writing environment to write in my journal, to write letters, blogs, and even various essays about love and relationships.

my perfect writing environment
lacking electricity and distraction
endless hours of
me and my pen

But with the arrival of Damon, a boyfriend, my writing has taken a hit. Having a 24 hour companion to take vacations to Banfora, Burkina Faso and to Ghana to experience new African sites and sounds put a stop sign on my writing.

But that is okay.

I've had fun travelling around. I don't like travelling probably due to my lifetime of car sickness. Without a companion I probably would have stayed put in my comfortable safe surroundings of village. I prefer the familiarity of having adapted and been accepted to a new culture rather than the stress of new money, of a maze of a new city, of drowning in a new language.

As a tourist, a new country, a new city, a new village, is not fun for me. Having a companion made it easier.

I love exploring new cultures as a long-term participant rather than a hello goodbye tourist.