Just past my 6 monthiversary and I can’t help but think of the Kenny Chesney song “Don’t Blink.”
“Trust me friend, a hundred years goes faster than you think, so don’t blink”
Ok, so it hasn’t been a hundred years, but time does go faster than you think!
I posted some numbers on my Facebook, I’ll share them here for those of you who are not my friends on Facebook:
8,346 miles, 2 new villages, 150 new students, 30 books, multiple new languages, countless pounds of xima, 50 marriage proposals, who knows how many new friends, and 1 new kitten.
No worries, I said no to all the proposals because they all went more or less like this: “if you buy me a beer you can marry me.” I’m not the biggest romantic, but I do require a little more than that…like knowing my name, my favorite color, my family, and a ring would be a nice touch.
I was talking to my roommate the other day about changes that occur, as I’m in my first 6 months and she’s in her last 6 months here. We realized we sit a lot more. We were making hard boiled eggs and just sat and watched the cold water run out of the faucet. I was watching a snail crawl across our veranda window one afternoon. I sit in the schoolyard and watch the classrooms full of learning. There’s a lot of watching. I never really observed my world before, not unless forced to for my Nature Writing class. Even while studying biology I never really just observed the whole world, I would just observe the fish or plant in the lab. I don’t sit and watch because I’m bored, I do it because I can here, time moves differently here. No one thinks it’s weird if you aren’t always doing something.
It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster of 6 months as most of you know. There have been days where I just wanted to get on the next plane back home and get back to my life before all of this. There have been times I hated my job and felt helpless and scared. There have been thunderstorms that have made me think I was going to die in Africa thousands of miles away from my family. But what is life without the lows? Without those moments, I wouldn’t appreciate the fact that all of the mamas in the market call me amiga, my students get upset when I miss school or I’m sick, my roommate and I pile so much activity into a weekend in Maputo that when we get home we are exhausted but laughing, or I get to take an adventure through this beautiful country and visit a beach. I can’t even begin to imagine/comprehend/explain everything I’ve learned and grown to appreciate in just the past 6 months. It’s one of those things that literally renders me speechless.
I’m positive the next 2 years…no 21 months…will continue to be a rollercoaster and all I can do is try to not blink and take it all in.