September 14, 2006

I was reading The Economist this morning, and this is how an article on African business began.  I thought you might get a kick out of hearing some familiar names- set off any memories

“At the Manda Hill and Arcade shopping centres in Lusaka, it is easy to forget that you are in Zambia’s capital.  For those traveling north from South Africa, the scene is eerily familiar: they can shop at Shoprite or Woolworths supermarkets and go for a bite to eat at Debonair Pizza.  MTN pre-paid mobile-phone cards are for sale at traffic lights and there are a choice of films at the Ster-Kinelor cinema or on the M-Net satellite television channel.”

I am glad for a few reasons this morning.  I was able to get off a gad of postcards and letters yesterday in the Land of the Minotaur; I am now only six hours away from you and gaining as we speaking; I will now never be so far away from you again as I am right now; and today marks our two-thirds mark.  Of course there are the what seem absolutes.  You were just getting in bed as I arose today, and now I write this, as always, while you are tucked in your warm bed.  I am pretty blessed in so many ways to have a person like you while away, I have had little reason to worry about you while I was gone.  You’ve always been so able to care for yourself and be self-reliant that I’ve had little reason to worry that you wouldn’t be okay, that you wouldn’t be prepared for school, and that you would get tripped up by life’s surprise barbs.  Yes, there were a few days in July when I was waiting for you to be re-steadied, but day after day I have no doubt that you are doing everything you must and I have no reason to fear otherwise.  It’s a big load off of my mind, without ever knowing it.

I am so looking forward to when we can finally talk again, and also to this weekend when you will not have to be indebted to the library to say hi to me.

Tell me if you think this is funny.  Among the goodies I got from you yesterday was a bunch of Clif bars.  I had never had one, even though they are sold at our ship’s store.  I had to smile because we have so few things offered to us (larger ships have their own 711-ish stores), yet Clifs are among them.  So I took it as a very good thing, that if I like them and couldn’t get enough I would have a ready supply.  And they are good.

Reply from Marley: Thank you for the yet again lovely email! It was nice to read during my break from class.And, as for you not worrying about me, I like that quality about myself. As for you not worrying about other people, you should try never to have people in your life like that, people that you have to worry about all the time. It is so stressful, and never teaches that person to be self-reliant.

 As to Zambia, their description of Manda Hill and Arcades is for the most part accurate, but I might have tweaked it a little more. Because I have a different vantage point from the place. But, it was nice to read about it and be reminded of my good times there. I actually did a lot of my emailing to you from one of the Manda Hill internet cafes.

September 10, 2006  Sunday (From Marley)

The first Sunday back to Hampton Roads for me.

I thought you might be pondering about my activities of today, while I was out an about. So to fill you in here it goes…..the morning started off fairly early for a Sunday. Around 8 am I thought I would head to the Buckroe and get in a workout. After putting on my exercise clothes, grabbing my water bottle I passed Reggie and his friend passed out on the couch. I could tell my stirring upstairs, and the light which started to fill the room was waking them up. I said good morning and headed out the side door. I drove tot he beach and the streets were empty. Along my drive I had hoped that my local Sevie carried the Washington Post, because I prefer it over the local paper now. My basic cable keeps me well connected to the city anyhow. We I arrived at the beach parking lot i noticed how much had changed for the beach area. There was a bit of a revival of the area and nice to enjoy with the few of other strangers either in their cars reading the paper, near the water, and some in the water. I had a nice sweat going for about an hour then I decided it was time for Madonna to come out of my ears and I took a  very lei surly stroll along the water. Sending some of my time looking out to the Atlantic and wondering if I could watch your ship pass by Buckroe and still have time to see you dock in Norfolk.

Finished with the beach and leaving the increasing crowd I headed to sevie an sure enough I found my Post and also a tastes of the local crowd. It is not much different than any other part of Hampton- kind of po’dunk and kind of ghetto but all harmless.

On the quick ride home I planned out the rest of my day. I would shower and get ready with Tim Russert, eat breakfast and read with Chris Matthews, and throw in a quick session with me and my wandering fingers. After the quick burst of energy I decided it was time to leave home and see Ellie because I had asked her to take a few snaps that I could email you. So I hope that  you enjoy them. They are of me, just be me.

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