call to prayer
The sounds of evening call to prayer can be quite beautiful. Morning call to prayer, at five ish, are a little bit less inspiring, but taking a bath in the deepening night, as I am serenaded by imams (in a fashion), is pretty cool. Especially when the weather is as dry and relatively cool as tonight.
Life has been a blur lately – no posts in a while are the result. Two Fridays ago I had an experience with a mason that maybe shouldn’t be recorded, but was very “instructive”. That night Woman came up and we went out with two friends who were on the monthly mail run – so I got some letters and packages! Very much appreciated. Then I spent the weekend vaguely recovering from the mason, talking to Woman on Saturday, and seeing some other friends on Sunday. Monday was my last day of work before the trip to Basse, which was a smashing success.
I told myself I would write about the trip up there, which had some classic travel in Gambia moments, but maybe this isn’t the time.
Thanksgiving, though, was a home run; no body missed turkey, the chicken was so good, and almost everybody contributed something to making it a great time. I was there all day Wednesday getting ready for the storm, which blew in that night and lasted through Saturday. We did lots of story telling, reminiscing from training, and hanging out, a great group of people happy to be reunited after a couple big months.
There were board games played, there was wine consumed, and there was lots of recognition of growth in a group which had seemed pretty young when I met them in Philadelphia five months ago. It’s starting to feel like we’ve been here a while – soon we won’t be “the new guys” anymore, as the Environment volunteers are about to swear in and take over that role. There have been many times when I wasn’t sure this was the experience I wanted, that my life was headed in a different direction, but recently things seem to be better, more often. It’s still hard plenty of the time, and it’s still Africa all of the time, but slowly slowly things evolve.
Work is busy, which may be a part of it. I am getting a handle on some projects, and getting people warmed up to working with me. And the one project with a principal who really isn’t bringing anything to the table has officially gone back burner. Yesterday my boss came through, on her trek around to see all the education volunteers. She basically focused my work, cajoled some people, and made other things official that I had been doing on the side. Made my life easier, in other words. The best kind of boss, I have been lucky to work with one or two in the past, and always appreciate them.
Today I played basketball for the first time since mid-Ramadan, and apparently there is a tournament or something on Saturday. I will have to check that out, and let you know.I wrote a little bit last night, but I was pretty wiped out and it’s a bit sloppy. Enjoy!