(What I Got) Out of Africa

A Brief Peace Corps Experience Told in Short Breaths and Countless Letters

Sunday, August 17, 2003

17 August 2003

Sometimes, I'm struck by the absurdity that I'm in Africa. For example, yesterday I was sitting in a matatu with a little square speaker hanging right next to my left ear. It was blasting out this awful, tinny, high-pitched music and the woman next to me on my right was screeching out the same song in an equally high-pitched, tinny voice. I just sat there, thinking, "Dear Jesus, I do not belong here."

It was just so absurd.

Now we're in Kisumu for Field-Based Training and we walked by the giant market. Mamas lined the street, selling fried fish, assorted vegetables, ripe fruits and suddenly I can not believe I am in Africa. Africa. But at the same time, it's become an almost numb feeling, like....numb. I'm not excited or in awe or feeling like, "oh my god." Maybe the word is detatched. I feel detatched. It's so unrealistic and totally not a part of my life as I know it. Or knew it.


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