Patience

It has been over a month since you finally moved into your house. It is still barren and cold even in the hottest days. Little by little it is becoming a home.
Your village is where you are comfortable. You get tired and annoyed having to go into town for anything. The other Americans in your village are exactly the type of Post Mates you wanted, but they are being replaced soon. You are glad to know them, to see how things go in your village.
Teaching is not so much teaching as speaking loudly and staring firmly. The smallest class is 57 students and the largest is 76. There is a constant hum of little voices. You try to get things in order because if you don’t you will be overpowered in a second. It is draining and not how you wanted to teach. You give yourself six weeks to get used to it all and think of new ways to teach so many minds that want nothing to do with it. But they still love having a white teacher. The same student you made kneel at the front of the class for the whole hour will smile and wave at you on the street.
Is it the system or the kids?
All in all you love it. You love the hating but liking your students. You love the milky-way above your head as you walk home, gliding on a muddy road. You get tired of not figuring out what or how to really cook here, but you love the little dinner of a shack that makes the only beans you will ever love. You love the little disco lights in the one room bar in the village where you play chess with your Post Mates.
You find yourself sitting in the waiting room of the Norwegian Hospital in Ngaoundere waiting for blood tests. The waiting room is a tin roof with benches that became a music hall when it downpours. You end up waiting three hours and buying your own syringe, yet never got too mad or frustrated.You wanted to white man your way into being seen quicker and even thought of bribing someone to get you ahead in line, but you decided to wait like everyone else. You looked around you and realized there was no reason to be impatient or frustrated, what else was there to do? You couldn’t go do the other things you had planned because of the rain and if you did somehow this task would be sitting there waiting for you.
Patience is born in poverty out of necessity. You have to wait for help, for water, for food, for friends, for credit to call home, for bread, for electricity and even family. Waiting is an act of hope and when you are stuck in a place with nothing with at times nothing to do all you can do is hope. That is what you have been learning in your village and at work being around so much poverty. Patience. Hope.

Some poems written recently:

Rain in Africa (16/09/2014)

The sky becomes shared time
as it falls in fatigue
like an exhausted man on a bed
-liquid sigh splashing
the bed twists and forms to his body
His breath cool as it swirls
around quite mouths
for the tin roof is loud
but the silence is warm

Teaching (26/09/2014)

The voice hurts
eyes wonder
stomachs growl
the air is half frustration
half ennui
carbon dioxide of poverty
relearning how to breath
but the chalk is chocking me

White man (26/09/2014)

Are you a girl?
Where is my candy?
Can I go to America with you?
Why are you here?
That is a good idea.
No problem.
Find me a wife.
-let me fix what the white man
breaks, makes, fakes.
-The world is irate