Sunday, June 24, 2007

a thousand words (i hope)

A few more pictures from the Sudan trip. I fear that Africa may be the predominant blogging topic for a while - if that suits you, excellent; if not, bear with me.

I hope these images begin to capture the scope of activity, emotion, and atmosphere of our experience. I considered not including the rather graphic image of the slaughtered bull below, but I felt it would be dishonest not to attempt to show the full breadth of what we saw. Hope you find something you like within these images:

Friday, June 22, 2007

(re-)defining a sense of place

From the Merriam-Webster Dictionary:
homesick- (adj.) longing for home and family while absent from them

This word feels strange to me. It feels as ambivalent now as it once felt unequivocal. The concept seems so obvious: you have a home and family, and you long for those things when they are not near you. It is cured when you return to them.

The problem is that I am tempted to claim that I am homesick for Sudan. But I can't. Not really. It isn't my home, and the people there are not my family. Still...the feeling is a close approximation. I miss Sudan in a way that is more than just "missing" it. I long for the land, the people, the way of life, as if it makes as much (maybe more?) sense to me than my own home. It feels more immediate, more intentional than Richmond. Less anesthetized than life as an American. I'm certain that my perspective will shift back to "normal" at some point...but a week and a half after our return, it still lingers like the residue of a dream that continues to color your waking hours long into the afternoon.

More photos and thoughts later - about to head out the door...