25 May 2009

I Like Bullet Points

  • This morning, I went to put on my sweatshirt.  As I picked it up, I noticed that it was a bit heaver than usual.  With a thud, the cat dropped out and on to the couch.  It buried itself into the hoodie to sleep last night.  Score another point for a great cat.
  • I had a strange ‘nightmare’ of sorts last night.  Basically, it was October and I was back home from Kenya and extremely upset that I was no longer here.  I am taking that to be a good sign when that is the only nightmare I have had under the influence of meflaquaine (spelled terribly wrong) and that it means I like it here.
  • While sitting outside chatting with Neto, I saw a man riding in town on his motorcycle.  Seated in front of him was his son, no older than the age of two.  Both without helmets.  Both enjoying the ride.
  • People here fear that epilepsy can be spread like a cold and believe that they may inhale it and become epileptic.
  • I had to explain to David, Angela and Neto that there are no dowries in America.  They thought for sure that there were and were shocked to learn that two people can get married without involving the parents and the exchange of money.  They informed me that the price for a bride can be steep.  The family of an educated girl will calculate the total for her school fees and charge the groom the price in addition to cows and other money.  A female doctor could cost a man hundreds of thousands of shillings.  As David put it, “A man has to go broke in order to have a wife.  They must start again with nothing.”
  • This then led to a conversation between Angela and I involving allowing children to run about town without supervision.  I told her how it would be considered neglect if a parent allowed his or her child to walk to school when he or she was only three or four.  Here it is common place, kids are everywhere.  Older siblings will take care of the younger ones as they roam Malava.  It was interesting to learn about it and how she thought that it made children more independent so that whey they go off to board for secondary school, the children are not too attached to their parents.  I would say that there is something to be said for easing off and letting kids be what they are: kids.
  • We will have an addition to our three in a month.  Katie O’Dea is currently serving in Nigeria but has a visa that lasts through June.  So, she will be moving to Malava to work at an orphanage in Kakamega and give Sue some company with all the nuns.  Michael has determined that June 22nd will be known as ‘O Day.’
  • The bishop will be here Friday, so that should be a big event.  The choir is practicing daily now to prepare and it sounds like some newer songs for once.  The bonus will be the fact that there is guaranteed to be a good meal.