SHE SPIT IN MY FACE...2 TIMES... @ 21 Jan 2009
I have not written for a bit...the internet and email services through my phone have been down. However, I was glad when I came home this evening and found things were back up and running.<br /><br />The last 2 days, I have been working with Pastor David, a fundi (builder) named Wavula from Lodwar, and the church members from Nakechichok. 20 students will come on Friday from Nairobi and they want to help close in the new building. So we have been working to install posts in between the large ones so the palm branches can be nailed in place to close in the building.<br /><br />Anyway, today, I was waiting on my folks to finish buying their crocker sacks (100lbs) of flour and sugar (in Lodwar) so we could travel back to Nakechichok and continue another long day of work. While I sat in my truck, a very old mama walked up. She gave me a huge smile and greeted me. I greeted her back. She then asked for a blessing from me because the New Year has come. I gave her 40 shillings (about 50 cents) which is enough for her to eat today. She saw the money in her hand and gave me a bigger smile...then she spit right in my face. She then did it a second time! Thewd...thewd! I was sitting in my truck, she is less than 2 feet from my face and she spit on me!!<br /><br />I began yelling to Pastor David in Swahili, (I speak little Turkana and the Mama speaks nothing else), why did she spit in my face?, what is the problem?!!!<br /><br />The mama looked confused but kept smiling at me with this huge smile. Pastor David explained that in the Turkana culture, when someone has nothing else to give to bless you, they will spit in your face and your hands. It is supposed to me that you will go with their prayers and people believe if a mzee (an elder) does this, you have been thoroughly blessed!!<br /><br />So I have been thoroughly blessed today!! I asked David why is this the first time a Turkana has done this to me. He said it is because I am no longer a visitor...I am Turkana. I have a Turkana name, all my friends and the people I run around with are all traditional Turkana folks (not the one from town who look dress used clothes from America). Apparently people are talking about the white Turkana named Ekiru.<br /><br />I am thinking about using Eddie again after today! I love the Turkana people and their culture...but this spitting thing is tough for me to take!! I felt like I could taste her spit on my lips all day! My glasses were so covered with her "blessing" that I had to use 2 clothes to get them dry and clean. I won't even mention the Tuberculosis (spelling?...TB) that is so common here...along with many other illnesses that I just will not think about. <br /><br />All that aside...the spitting was a blessing. To know that I am being received as one of them...that the love I have tried so hard to show is being received as the love of be spit on by an old mama...I truly was blessed!<br /><br />Much love,<br />Ekiru
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