POST BY JAMAICA LYNNE WESTON
Sunday January 23, 2011
Sitting at our favorite eatery, ironicly named Chicago, the smell of Addis fills my nose as the traditional music constantly sings in the background. I’ll miss the flavor of the buna (coffee) and especially the appreciation of the time it takes for it to arrive at our table; I suppose I’ll miss the laid back time schedule then as well.
It’s funny how quickly it is for a human to adapt to a completely new sourrounding, but how hard it is to leave. Although we have been there from the 6 am PB&J’s to the 11 pm St. George sessions, I don’t feel like I have completley experienced everything that we’ve seen, I’ve only reacted to it. Through the lens it is easy to capture, but not easy to fully be in every moment.
This makes the journey home hard as I treasure the moments I did spend immersed in experience and experience only. The connections I had with people and the friends I made along the way provided those opportunities to take, in gulps, the culture I had been witnessing. Now all that remains are the remnants of Western shock in which I didn’t really find myself missing; well, occasionally it http://www.runacrossethiopia.org missed when I forgot to bring toilet paper with me. I suppose I feel overwhelmed with the fact that I have a closet full of clothes or a home with more than 1 room, but more than anything, what I think I’ll take with me is not at all what I expected. Sure I am more appreciative about the opportunities and freedom back home, which I assumed would be the overall moral of my trip, yet what I really learned in the womb of Mother Africa was myself. To go somewhere foreign and learn to survive in a different way shook my core and made me question one thing in particular: happiness. What is it that makes one happy? I saw many children in the most impoverished situations with the brightest spirits and biggest smiles that I have never seen. So you could say I was shaken by my own core and am now on a new trip, to find the key to the city center of my own happiness.