A dastardly, bastardly bug of sorts infected our house last week. That is worth a whole other blog, some other time. Nothing worse than a bug that brings down four out of five household members in the middle of summer. But I digress.
Against all odds, I was in Africa last week. Zimbabwe to be exact, and then in Wyoming. Before you think all the Lysol has gone to my head, let me explain. I got completely lost in Alexandra Fuller’s , 2004 book Scribbling the Cat. It chronicles her friendship with a white African, Rhodesian war veteran; his wartime experience; and answers some of my questions of what became of her life, once she left Africa to live in the United States. Fuller grew up in present day Zimbabwe, which was then Rhodesia and in Zambia. Her two other memoirs titled Don’t Let Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood and Cocktail Hour Under Tree of Forgetfulness chronicle her life growing up in Africa.
Mind you, it is not light reading. It is full-blown, at times, brutal descriptions of war and its effects on the soldier she chronicles; on her as she hears and delves into his personal story; and on the people. The backdrop of this harrowing story is Africa in all its wild, incredible, incomprehensible beauty, with her countrymen and countrywomen living utterly, gloriously, messily, and sometimes tragically different lives than our own. It is good respite to lose ones perspective in favor of another, even for a short time.
So I ‘d highly recommend getting a little lost right now. It is the middle of summer. It’s that point of summer feeling like a fleeting fancy and school lurking around the corner. Also, like anything else, when our children see us doing something, they are more likely to do it themselves. There are so many ups and downs in this beautiful, strange, sad, and joyous life. But I call it personal victory when I see my girls lost in books, even when the day or the week had other losses…