Saturday, August 18, 2007

The Sun Also Rises: News from sub-Saharan Africa

I’m currently staying in a village in Africa that pretty much looks like a village in Mexico – dusty paths, adobe homes, friendly residents and lots of chickens and goats. And the town just east of us is called “Bracalalo”.

“Do you know how to determine where the sun is going to rise every morning?” I asked a woman that I rent a room from.

“No, how?” she gamely replied.

“The chickens tell us! At 5:30 am every morning, they all start screaming, ‘Bracalalo!’” Then we both cracked up laughing. Maybe it wasn’t the best chicken joke in the world but we liked it.

My NGO is training me to work in a sub-Saharan African village, helping out in the AIDS clinic and the school. It’s a lot of work but the people I’ve met are nice and I really like it here -- but the nearest internet access is 60 kilometers away by public “taxi” so with regard to communication with the outside world, I’ve pretty much fallen off the face of the earth.

With regard to hoping for a perfect world filled with peace and justice, however, I’m still at the top of my game. And I’m still hoping that some time really soon, someone will somehow manage to get word to me that the American people have finally wised up and that Bush and Cheney are now in jail.

According to one of my African friends, “The President [sic] of America and the President of Zimbabwe are a lot alike because they both like to see human blood spilled – but they are also different because Bush has a lot more money to do it with.”

PS: I still don't have access to the internet but am working on it. The nearest internet cafe currently is 60 km away.