As they say, ‘the grass is always greener on the other side’….well, things are actually pretty green here considering I’m in the tropics (and especially since we had a couple rains to wash away the months of red dust off the leaves)
But I was trying to be figurative; although it is easy to miss the comforts of home, I’ve gotten used to life in Sierra Leone over the past ten months (it has been ten months!) and I can even say that the Salone (Krio for Sierra Leone) people have helped me grow and change, however slight. Here are just three ways that I’ve been dragged out of that out of that grand ole place I like to call ‘my comfort zone’ :)
- Everything is a negotiation. Salone people love to talk, even about nothing at all. Talking is rarely direct and purposeful, instead it is more circular used as mode of entertainment. I’m starting to think that people negotiate less for the objective of a better price and more for the fun of it. I’m not much of a talker. I like to sit back and listen usually, but I’m getting used to shooting the breeze :)
- People love to help. I think this is another way people entertain themselves. Doing something is more fun than doing nothing, thus there is always a pair (or ten pairs) of helping hands eager to accomplish my goal for me. I like to do things for myself. I can be a bit stubborn about my self-sufficiency. It took some time to allow people to take things from my hands and finish my task for me, and I’m even finding myself more wiling to freely offer a lending hand to others (must be contagious).
- People like to watch what I do. If I travel through our village, Komahun (pronounced koo-ma-roo, don’t ask me why), there will be a barrage of greetings and shouts (the shouting is mostly from children) and plenty of staring eyes. I am a stranger from a strange place and people don’t hide their interest. Believe it or not, I’m a shy girl. I like to observe and not be the one that’s being observed. I prefer not to attract attention, so has taken time to let myself simply enjoy the regard from others and use it as an opportunity to build more relationships. I appreciate that the attention I bring continues to be positive.
This is certainly not where the list ends, just a few reflections on enjoying life in the bush :)
Now, if I could just find a Movie Theatre so I can go see The Hunger Games!