About Me

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I teach abroad and continue to pursue the life I was given as if it was my last. Many people think it is. In my spare time, I enjoy lapping up ice cream, reading spy novels, and euthanizing manta rays.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

An Otherwise Ordinary Saturday

I barely remember the last time I felt cold. Riding through dusty Kampala on the back of a motorcycle at eleven in the evening, wearing nothing more than a linen tee and cargo pants, a shiver never crossed my path. The warm African climate is so easy to get used, especially on lazy, hungover and throaty Saturdays, filled with an afternoon siesta on the patio hammock, listening to Baganda drummers, Catholic organs, and the occasional riff of Billy Holiday on my i-tunes.

I passed the time hanging between two rusted nails and Mexican thread while the sun slowly descended around me. I sat at times watching the locals move about on the path between campus on the clay road behind the estate. A girl of 14, fully shaved, dark, strong and mature, carried containers full of well water back and forth, stopping to rest, sigh, smile and wave at me before continuing out of sight. A student sprawls out on the neighbors lawn, bringing a large tapestry out of her purse and laying down to read through her lecture notes, presumably.

After I read another chapter in my book, I look to my left and see something new: two cows, roaming free, sunning and scratching themselves underneath the hedges thirty feet away. Their ropes dangle freely behind them; two children finally free of their babysitter's watch, free to wreak havoc on the neighborhood. Within seconds, Dan is walking after them with purpose, clapping his hands and hissing at the disturbance of his garden vegetables. I found the whole scene amusing...

Dan got a new iron door for his shed this morning and a firepit circuitously bordered by brick. Not sure what's happening there. Or who's funding it.  The workers brought their hammers to the party early in the morning, but I was kinda up anyway.

A male student walks by with a white tam'o'shanter cap, Reebok kicks up to mid calf, unlaced, with a Slazenger polo dangling of his shoulders and a toothpick flossing back and forth across his mouth. He studies me and the house, as if casing the joint. I get the stares a lot when I'm on the patio. Today particularly so because I'm in shorts, sunglasses, with a bright red shirt on. I wave and he nods ('sup dude...') before I go back to the pages resting on my stomach.

I've got 83 essays and 83 quizzes in my den and absolutely no desire to delve into them today. That's a good Sunday morning, holding coffee, watching a thunderstorm activity. It's not for Saturday afternoons like this, sun-soaked and lackadaisical. My throat's scratchy, besides. Maybe from the secondhand smoke inside Iguana last night. Maybe from the boda boda ride home. My hair had granules of clay in it when I rinsed off this morning. Either way, I'm very slow today. So slow in fact that I'm following a Ryder Cup Golf blog as I read my novel, drink tea, ponder dinner, and watch the day go by.

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