Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Well, I had a blog written but my jump drive doesn't work on the computer I chose at the internet cafe so I'm writing a new one. It was just rambling anyway, as I'm sure this one will be.

It's been awhile since I've posted. I guess I just have felt like I didn't have anything to say. Not too much has been happening. I've tried to stay at site with the exception of once a week coming to Cape Coast to do internet and some work. My community and I are more aware that I am leaving in about 7 months (give or take) so we're trying to get some things worked out. Check out the Ministry of Tourism's website, my community (Mesomagor and Kukyekukyeku Bamboo Orchestra) are on it. I'm pretty excited about it. There's only one person in my community who uses internet but everyone else knows about it (although they probably don't understand when we talk about websites and internet).

I just finished Ponds of Kalambayi, a book written by an RPCV a few years after returning. He served in the mid-80's in then-Zaire teaching people how to build and maintain fish ponds. With the exception of some administrative policy things (we don't get motorcycles and we have a pretty strict safety and security policy) it really reflected what it can be like. The author was pretty busy in his job (more so than myself) but a lot of the cultural items and struggles were right on.

One subject he touches on is love and marriage. When I was writing this earlier two men in the office I was at said "marriage is between families, not individuals." This sums it up perfectly. When I have tried to explain that "no, my father is not looking for a husband for me right now while I'm here," it doesn't always seem to get across. When I start talking about getting to know someone and falling in love, sharing the same sense of humor, enjoying movies and music, talking about childhood memories, etc. it doesn't seem to make any impression. In one of the chapters in this book, the author retells a situation where one of his friends says that you do not marry a woman for love; you marry her to cook, clean and bear children (this is changing in some places, but I often feel it in my own community). The love you have is for your whole family, your parents, grandparents, sisters, brothers, children, etc, not one person. When I read that, it helped me understand the conversations I've had with people. At times, they were extremely frustrating and went around in circles until we both left confused and not any better off. I guess I never thought love and the idea of love was different, but it is. Disney doesn't corrupt everyone's mind. (just kidding!)

Other things talked about in the book are funerals (apparently Ghana is not the only African country which a funeral is an expensive, long, party, no matter how poor the family is), children, sickness and death, and just overall frustrating feelings, feelings of helplessness. There is a lot experienced and taken in here, I'm sure I will spend months, maybe years processing all of it. I will also take more with me than I am giving. Enough said.

I haven't posted pictures in a long time but hope to do so soon.

I will possibly write again soon..."God willing" (often said here)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey missy,
it's good to hear from you again. i sure do miss you hear at AGD. yes i'm still here. it sounds like you are growing up a little. hope you come back to indy and visit us. let me know when you get home. love Anne

12:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Sarah,

I cannot even imagine the impact this past year has had on you or will continue to have on you in the future. I am a big fan of yours as always! I hope Olivia, Zane and Nate will have at least a small mission experience to give them some of your perspective on life. Keep blogging!


10:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOVE hearing from you, but i can't wait to talk to you in person!


12:56 PM  

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