Earlier this week, we went to visit one of the goat beneficiaries and we had to cross the river to do so. My three little buddies from the buck station (see below) followed us to the river and in the blink of an eye had stripped down butt naked (or is it buck naked?) and jumped in the river. Absolutely unhindered and unashamed – they are all less than 6 years old – they played in the water for about 5 minutes, then jumped out and threw clothes back on their soaking wet bodies and ran back up the hill. Oh, to be young and wild and free like that. All I got to do was hike up my skirt and wade to the other side.
As we walked up the mountain to our destination, I tried to soak up every moment of the picture perfect day. Ideal fall-like weather, fresh air all around me, and a cool breeze blowing as we made our way through the corn fields and wheat fields. I hope I never forget that feeling. I wouldn’t trade anything in the world for those opportunities to walk through the countryside and visit these women. I can’t imagine a moment more innocent, more simple, more pure than that one. I am trying to soak it all in and store it all up for the day when I am no longer here.
As we got to the house, our hostess immediately started making tea and bringing in fresh corn to roast. If I have eaten one kernel of roasted corn (tastes kind of like corn nuts) in the past couple of weeks, I have eaten a thousand. What can I say? Harvest is in, this is what they have and they give it willingly and graciously to guests that come to visit. I have also taken to volunteering to be the one to pop the kernels off the cob – the word in their language for this action is “filafala” which I like because the word seems to match the action, like so many of their words do. As I have mentioned before, guests are not supposed to do work, but I don’t usually have to insist too hard after I tell them that I truly enjoy doing it. It is a much better alternative than sitting and staring at the wall blinking smoke out of my eyes while the hostess rushes around doing work.
Here is a little photo for you to enjoy the beauty of the teff fields around us!