December 30th 2008
I can’t believe there is only one day left to the year 2008. I can’t say I will be sad to see it go nor can I say I am ecstatic it’s over.
This year has served as a daunting challenge I never thought I would overcome… well at least not consciously…. The subconscious on the other hand is a funny thing.
Starting off with personal reasons, I’ve been to the inner circle of hell and back. There were so many times when I just wanted to throw in the towel. So many moments of uncertainty.
When I moved from England last year I initially thought it was going to be like a 3 month hiatus then I’d be back in the hustle and bustle of London doing my lawyer thing and all.
Now its been a year and two months since I moved from London, a city which I miss (not as often as one might think) dearly.
London to me is where I entered a very crucial stage of my metamorphosis from teenager to adult. So many firsts happened for me there; boyfriends, degrees, failures, successes, heartbreaks, close-calls, jobs, true development and experimentation of my fashion or style sense…. You name it I think it happened to me there.
When I left London I faced a yawning black hole of just not knowing what to do next with my life. My muses and all senses of creativity sucked out me into some writers/lawyers/imaginative persons’ vortex of gloom.
Now I have a job, I managed to write 3 chapters for ACNJ, dated a few guys and have just generally gotten on with the business of living.
I write this fresh from an eight day stint in the boonies. I will try and jot down a few of the impressions and experiences I have of my sojourn.
I went to the rural areas, my Mother’s village in the western part of ZW.
I am happy, nay, pleased to report that there was no cholera scares there! The scenery was so rich and vibrantly green, the whole way there I just wanted to leap out of the car and roll up and down the hills like Julie Andrews in the Sound of Music. Sweet Lord, just thinking about that green makes me wanna grab it straight out of my memory and into my hands.
I was struck by the raw and natural beauty of the land. And I couldn’t help but muse that the Earth really is indifferent to human wants and needs sometimes. People are going through a lot in this beautiful country but the land itself just thrives like it did in the better times of yore and will continue to do so in the good times that I staunchly believe will come again.
The soil was positively living, breathing, browns and reds that just beckoned for me to plant my feet in it and dance with appreciation. Man it was just so intense it started to hurt to look at.
When we arrived at our place, the whole immediate family had converged. It was dusk, and the sun set was like something out of a book. The colors; sienna, orange and pinkish red do not do it any justice but they shall have to suffice. Also there were these majestic grayish blue clouds on the periphery. If I could have taken flight right then and there I would have. It was just too brilliant in its dusky glory for me to ignore.
In fact my only regret is that I did not invest in a digital camera so I could upload them up here. But hey isn’t that the purpose of working a J.O.B? I must endeavour to obtain one in order to have photographic evidence of the treasures I speak of.
That was the first day… the next week or so was filled with fights, debates, tears and laughter around the fire. No not the campfire, the cooking fire where the needs of 37 human beings were met three times a day everyday.
See the structure of the round-huts that are African tradition is that there is a cooking fire in the middle of the room. Kinda like the cooking fires the Native Indians had in their teepees. Perhaps the main difference is that in our huts (when I say our I mean ZW because I cannot speak for the rest of Africa) we have a built in bench along the walls of the hut. And a display shelf as well for all the plates, pots, pans, cups and cooking utensils.
It was well… Christmas vacation with the fam! The real kicker was having to walk downhill five minutes (which is not a lot by any standards) to the water pump to procure water for all our needs, be it cooking, drinking, bathing, mopping, whatever. Us girls took turns in groups of 3 or 4 and it involved us carrying anything between 10 and 25 litres of water on our heads. I KNOW! Can you dig it!? I carried 20 litres of water on my head up and down that hill all week. Sometimes 4-5 times in one day! I am totally gutted that I didn’t have a camera for that.
Then there were the ants that bite the shit out of you on that very same hill from the water pump. This time round those suckers were out to get me I tell you, I thought I was going to die from the pain of those bites. But I survived and am here to tell the tale!
Oh and also I actually went out into our cornfield and did farmer-like stuff. I don’t even know the right term for what I did, I think it’s tilling the soil but I could be wrong. That was back-breaking labor and I have a newfound respect for people who do that for a living and provide the rest of us non-farmer-types with food and sustenance. Those nasty ants were to be found in patches of the field so that was highly upsetting for me. I think I’ve developed a phobia of them now!
The cornfield thing was on my last morning before I finally returned to the CITY!!
It’s confirmed, I’m a city girl at heart. Something I’ve always known but for a vacation, I know I worked harder than most might expect but it was all fun, you know? And don’t get me wrong there was lots of drinking in the late afternoons… I mean evenings (heh). We consumed a case of champagne and I don’t know how many cases of beer while were there. If I’d had a camera I’m sure I could have sold the pictures of us sitting in our round-hut, downing Heinekens, Carlsbergs, Moet & Chandon, JC LeRoux, as well as Courvoisier (not straight of course dahlings); to the respective companies.
And on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day we threw a big party. There were a lot of traditional drums played, singing and dancing and general merriment…. I wish I could have invited everyone I knew up there it was truly an awesome time.
*Sigh* Now its over, I get back to civilization so to speak and first thing I hear is that peeps are bombing each other in Gaza! There was a military coup in Guinea! Oil prices are going up! Sweet Lord, ignorance really is bliss….
Onwards and upwards they say! And for posterity a few entries I had made post-getting a job…..
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