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unexpected

March 9, 2011

When I rolled out of bed yesterday morning, I had a rough idea of how my day would go. After a morning at the community center clinic, I would come home to take a long shower and throw a load of laundry in the washer (water day!). I’d get some cleaning done, and then I’d head out to my afternoon appointments.

So I was a little surprised when, several hours later, I instead found myself sitting on a worn striped pallet under the shade of a Bedouin tent, drinking soured goat’s milk and chatting with a garrulous mother-daughter duo. Surrounded by their chickens and the open countryside, they made multiple-wife jokes, and I failed miserably at translating them into Korean for the couple that had brought me there. The rest of the translation efforts went a little better, although there were a few times when the daughter had to repeat my sentences with a Bedu accent (instead of my Palestinian/city one) and at twice the volume so her mother could understand me.

As we got up to leave, one of their sons came barreling down the hill with a herd of goats and a donkey at his side. The women immediately got to work milking, calling out blessings and goodbyes while we climbed back into the car.

On the way back to the city we wove past lush fields and sheepdogs and wildflowers, stopping to buy some green onions from a family harvesting them by the side of the road. Standing there, exchanging winks with their little girls and breathing in deep the clear valley air, I had a moment of terrible disorientation. They aren’t infrequent, these moments of thinking where am I, and what am I doing? And I never do feel like I’ve quite managed to answer either question to satisfaction.

Some days are like this. I can’t explain them. Things happen that are totally unexpected. And really, the fact that I didn’t wake up this morning and think to myself, “Today, I am going to hang out in a Bedouin tent,” made it even more exhilarating.

what country is this again?

 

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Brian permalink
    March 27, 2011 3:58 am

    I wish I had days like this.

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