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Just now now: a photo representing the past week; a visual gratitude journal, of sorts. 

My heart belongs to Southern Africa.

I can’t entirely explain it.

I was obsessed with the place for a solid twenty years before I ever set foot on African soil. And when I finally did, it was better than I could have imagined. It was like coming home.

I’m now a ridiculously lucky duck; I have been over there several times and I freelance with organizations that do work in South Africa.

I’ll live there someday.

It’s now been almost seven months since I was in Africa and I miss it like a dear, far away friend.

When the missing is like this, books ease the ache. This week, it’s been hard to get my nose out of Scribbling The Cat by Alexandra Fuller. I loved her first book, Don’t Let’s Go To The Dogs Tonight documenting her childhood during the Rhodesian/Zimbabwean civil war.

Here in Virginia, the weather is getting cooler, the dog curls up on the couch next to me and I am powerless to resist. I might just be flipping pages, but I’m suddenly back in Southern Africa. Fuller’s story is painful and beautiful and it reminds me the power of a good story to transport you.

I don’t think we have all the words in a single vocabulary to explain what we are or why we are. I don’t think we have the range of emotion to fully feeling what someone else is feeling. I don’t think we can sit in judgement of another human being. We’re incomplete creatures, barely scraping by. Is it possible – from the perspective of this quickly spinning Earth and our speedy journey from crib to coffin – to know the difference between right, wrong, good and evil? I don’t know if it’s even useful to try.

-Scribbling the Cat

Why are there some places that just get into your soul and stay there?

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