Monday, June 08, 2009

a month and few days after the return

I have more or less adjusted to life back in the US. The excessive materialism (and I'm guilty, too having been sucked into H&M today - but hey I did need new shirts) still bothers me. The very available stacks of toilet papers and paper napkins are still beyond me. Before Malawi, I used loads of napkins to wipe my mouth or hands when eating or drinking, terribly conscious of any mess I might make. After Malawi, I use one napkin or not at all. A couple weeks after return to the US, I was prompted to use a napkin - probably because I was licking my lips and fingers clean. I don't use tissues much as I used to. If I have sniffles I would suck it in or ignore it altogether.

So far, especially in allergy season and having hay fever, I've not been sick other than typical morning sniffles. At all.

I discovered something during my stay in DC in the last few days - I can't do buffet style meals anymore. My stomach goes out of whack and I'm in and out of the toilet the next few hours, sometimes with a ring o' fire or two. Also, since my return I've not eaten many processed or canned food. The food I've eaten since January is usually straight off the stove or freshly prepared. Again, I've not been ill from seasonal allergies and rarely touch the sudafaded. Odd.

Other things beside the food - the streets (not counting cities) seem oddly bare of life. In Malawi, there's people everywhere at all hours - working, loitering, chatting. Even daytime here with no one on the streets is depressing. Highways and streets were not always occupied by automobiles - Malawians also walked on foot or on bicycle usually carrying their wares. There is no one riding on the back of pick up trucks and lorries. Automobiles and people are far apart.

Internet access - practically unlimited especially with the active Blackberry device in my hands - is disturbing. I'm fickle with the internet use because I no longer have to set time to be tied to my laptop for a fixed time frame. Once the fixed internet time was done I could focus on doing other things, not thinking I ought to be checking the laptop or the BB every other minute. I have been lax with my overall daily structure. A month has passed now - no more excuses!


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