I doubt I will ever have a summer like this again. I have no commitments but to visit people and catch up. Luckily, I still have some perks through my mother’s airline job, enabling me to just go wherever, whenever. It really is the best but for a limited time. This nomad life is beginning to wear on me and I yearn for the next phase of my life where i will grow new roots and begin again. And I miss a certain someone in South Africa. I have spurts where I miss Botswana, but I’m not there yet. I think the fact that i will be back on that great continent in just eight weeks lessens the longing. BUT, I do miss my Francistown Branch of the LDS church. During my last year as a peace corps volunteer I made a commitment to go to church once a week, travelling the 400 km round trip. It was so beautiful to be a part of a congregation so special. Having reflected on my service for a month now, I think that my attendance and participation in the LDS Francistown Branch was one of the most rewarding experiences. So that makes it difficult to come back.
Most days, it hardly feels like I’ve left. Like I’ve been here all along. Did I really live in that village? A few days after I came to the US, I met a friend of a friend, she was a recently returned Peace Corps Volunteer and I clung to her for support and understanding, even if I only was with her for an hour. But she told me something and i have been thinking about that for the last months ‘Tell your story, people will listen.’ Thats a hard thing to do because its not like people don’t want to listen, it just takes the right time and place to be able to tell it. I was on an airplane to Portland from Phoenix and the couple next to me let me talk all I wanted about my experience and were endlessly fascinated. I appreciated that. I felt like that is what I needed. Because it is surprising how not interested people are in your experience. But its ok because sooner or later I need to realize that I am not the most interesting person in Utah or in America or in my family, that everybody has a story, and most times I need to listen rather than be heard.