The hotel shuttle driver who picked me up from the airport asked if it was my first time in Africa. I had to laugh out loud. I’m African! This will soon change, but as of this moment, I’ve lived longer in Africa than anywhere else.
So, no, this is not my first time on the continent. I know all about the beautiful madness of this place.
I know about perfect strangers that want to question your personal business, like the office driver who wanted a detailed report for why I had been married three years and didn’t have any kids yet. He told me, “that’s unnatural!” (What is it with me and nosy drivers?!)
I know all about hotel bathtubs that are made for giants. You need a step ladder to climb into the tub and often need to kiss the shower wall for the shower head water to reach you. And what’s the deal with the window without curtains right at the level of my bust on the shower side of the bathroom?
I know all about superlative promises that never materialize. “Yes, madam, we have WiFi in every room!” Yeah right! Lol
But I also know about the indefatigable spirit of my people, the joy in simple things and the absolute enjoyment of things I often take for granted in the US: water from a tap, lights that turn on when I flip a switch, ice-cream that isn’t totally melted and recombined straight from the grocery store freezer.
Today is Thanksgiving and I’m in Zambia. I am thankful for this continent that raised me; I am grateful for all that it has taught me and I appreciate the laughs it now gives me.