Thursday, March 19, 2009


Being in Buta feels so isolating, though Mamas Gaudin and Cecile have done their best to make me feel like a daughter. Today, they brought me a pillow -- a real pillow in a pillowcase -- which is rarer than gold OR diamonds out here!

At first shiny and new, today on the internet had a bit of a sadness attached to it. And not because it was expensive, but because I realized how long it had been since I had really gotten to keep in touch with friends at home.

I had no idea what was going on in their lives, and even sadder, it was going to be several more weeks still until I had the bandwidth and/or the time to further reconnect. Sometimes it’s easy, when you’re disconnected, not to focus on the things you’ve left behind. You can imagine with little trouble that life at home is just on Tivo-pause, and that it will only unpause once you get home.

Regardless, it gave me a good tug towards feelings of homesickness.

I also heard a lot of people marveling to me at how “difficult” life was here; opinions formulated based on regular following of my blog.

Yes, it probably is difficult, but the funny part is that things I suppose would cause most people to balk have become sort of commonplace for me and Adam both. Horrorshows are just another item on the “To Do” list and if I don’t think about how hard it is to do, it just gets done.

Perhaps it’s a question of never looking forward, but looking down. No one ever got scared by looking at just the shadow of the dragon.

Realization that these things are difficult, though, and that not only will it continue to be an uphill climb for the next several weeks but that the bulk of what’s at stake - the lives of these chimpanzees and their future happiness and safety - lies with me alone here on the front line... it’s really isolating.

And not something I’d allowed myself to think about previously.

... Probably for good reason.

The printer at the Catholic Mission Cybercaf√© was broken, so I’ll need to return to the other cybercaf√© again tonight and print more things. Tomorrow I meet with more officials and then it’s back to Aketi. Thank goodness. If I have to spend another day in this cybercaf√© listening to the same two Hallelujah songs, I might just go insane.

Funny how the 5 hour motorcycle ride through the jungle isn’t the toughest thing I have to look forward to!

1 comment:

Brian said...

Perhaps it’s a question of never looking forward, but looking down. No one ever got scared by looking at just the shadow of the dragon.

Reminds me of one of my all time favorite lyrics

cuz when i look around
i think this, this is good enough
and i try to laugh
at whatever life brings
cuz when i look down
i just miss all the good stuff
when i look up
i just trip over things
--Ani Difranco

Take it as you will.