Archive for December, 2007

harmattan season means dust

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

The 4 or 5 mosques in my neighborhood are crying simultaneously as the sun sets.  Tonight the sunset is not the spectacular show I’ve come to love about Africa.  It is Harmattan season and the dusty sky hides the colors.  My house is coated with dust; my eyes fill with dust as I bike to work.  On the other hand, nights and mornings are cool and it is a welcome relief from the hot equatorial sun.

On Monday I visited an “American Studies” class at Lycee LaGrace.   I spoke for a little about the current presidential campaigns, and then I opened the floor to questions.  The kids blew me away with their tough, interesting, insiteful questions.  For example “Why is their still capital punishment in Texas?” , “Would I face discrimination in America with a Moslem name?”  “Do you believe that your elections are completely open and fair?”  “Why do Americans love their flag so much?”

You can see they didn’t let me off easy.  So I’m curious ; how would YOU have responded to those questions?  Feel free to comment on this post with your ideas.

took a fall

Thursday, December 13th, 2007

I’ve been trying to run in the mornings at 5:30.  This gives me some privacy, since most people aren’t about yet, and it also gives me a chance to watch the beautiful African sunrises.  But this morning my toe got caught on a rock and a tripped.  I didn’t just fall, I landed hard and spectacularly in one of the brown riverlets of sludge that comes from toilets.  Yes, I was covered in wastes, and had falled hard enough to have open wounds. 

Luckily the Peace Corps provides us with lots of cleaning and antibacterial supplies.  Despite the humilation of being covered in shit and blood on the way home, I’m ok and haven’t slowed down.