21 July 2013

wake up

On my bike last night, the air felt like Rwanda. It was cool but not cold. Perfect.

I was on my bike, and for a block or two, the air smelled like burning, the very smell of most of the continent of Africa, and I was homesick.

If you had told me in 2008, when I flew out of Addis Ababa, that it would be my last trip to Africa for more than five years, I would have laughed at you, and then I would have wept.

It is impossible. Once I went back to Africa in 2000, to Kenya and then back to Liberia, I couldn't imagine that I would ever again have a life that did not involve significant time on the continent.

When I was 26, I'd spent half my life there.

Now it feels so far away.

I don't know this person who hasn't been to Africa in five years, who has let lack of money and vacation time keep her stuck in one place.

I think I need to find myself again. Those years in Universe City were soporific, but I've escaped now, and I'm waking up. The world is waiting for me.

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