07 March 2011

2 Months to COS

My family took me out to a great pork and chips dinner by the lake for my birthday. Radio & Weasel's "Heart Attack" started playing in the middle of our meal and I had to take a dance break because it's my favorite song. (You should listen to it! Dial this number: 256-783-199-074 and you can listen for free! And then you can talk to me! Not for free…)

My last birthday in Uganda was full of emotion. It's a strange feeling to know I will be back in America. My Close of Service (COS) is two months away! I've already told most people that I'm feeling very anxious/nervous to move back to what I imagine is a scary place full of people who won't invite me into their houses for tea. I'm nervous about feeling guilty for having so many choices. I'm scared that I'll point to places with my lips instead of my fingers. I'm worried that I'll try and order tacos de lengua in Luganda. "Olina tacos, ssente meka?" I'm sure that when I get on a bus I'll sit right next to the only other person and then when the driver won't stop exactly where I need to be, I'll refuse to pay. Wait. You pay when you first get on? See! Isn't that backwards?

I'll be scandalized when I see ladies with skirts above the knees! For shame! I'll curtsy when I first meet someone. I'll say "sorry" to everyone for everything. I won't be able to drive on the right side of the road! (Alright, may not be a problem since I have no car.) I won't be able to eat my lunch in under an hour. When I meet someone I'll want to hold their hand for a good minute or until I feel like we've greeted each other in a satisfactory way. "How are you?" "Fine" "Okay" "How's your family?" "Good" "Good" "How's the day?" "Good" "Good" "How's home?" "Fine" "Good"

I'll only be able to do one task a day because it's not feasible to get more than that accomplished. Right? I don't think I'll know how to use a cell phone. I'll cry when I see how many cereals I can choose from. When I see people in a queue, I'll wonder what they're doing and just walk right to the front. I'll wonder what happened when Mass ends in 45 minutes instead of at least an hour and a half. Did we even have time for speeches? I'll marvel at people playing with dogs. Dogs are allowed inside the house?

Though I'll be happy to be back during watermelon season. I may just stay inside my house eating watermelon, watching the phenomenon that is America pass me by outside. ..


  1. Hi Celeste!
    I'm flying in Sunday. Will be staying only 2 weeks this time, but hope to see you! Maybe dinner at the chinese place?
    You still have the same number?


  2. celeste,
    i know for sure of one thing
    you do NOT have to worry about!
    being invited for tea~
    at our house
    at my work!
    i even have a couple of 'tea' tables
    ready outside...i can hardly wait!!!
    we were both living on an emotional roller coaster on your birthday... i was tipping the 'tear cup' all day on your birthday,
    while you were sound asleep,
    and already a year wiser...
    thinking of where/how/what we would be doing on your birthday next year...,
    no worries, not in hurry.
    and i do not doubt, many of the 'worries' on your list will happen...but, i see them as 'trinkets' you brought back from Uganda~
    one of the smallest 'trinkets' i brought back from Uganda 'sparkled' at a supply house when i was asked if i wanted to place an order,
    or take the item with me...my response was
    "oh, no, i want to take it, NOW,NOW"! weird...
    maybe he thought i stuttered.
    and you will be in good company, ~ i still do not know how to use a cell phone, well, other than for phone calls...oh, yeah, and taking pictures...
    and i will HAPPILY stay inside with you to eat watermelons!!! ask anyone who really knows me.
    I am anxious also, from making sure i do not hug you too much~to worrying the backyard just won't seem to compare equally to the backyard you have had in Uganda these past 2 years~
    gardens of matoke, plantains, mangos, advocados
    beans, jack fruit, bananas...
    endless trails leading to...
    gorgeous plants you have to spend hours, and several paychecks on to get them a couple of feet high here... growing like weeds there, around...
    and LAKE VICTORIA!!!!
    i am keen on sharing your 'rediscovery' of america!
    te amo, con carino, be good~

  3. mom, mom, mom. (shaking head.)

    My loyal blog follower. (still shaking head.)

    Don't worry mom, you can't hug me too much. And if i forget to hug you, i'll at least remember halfway out the door to come back!

    Someone just came up to me and asked when i was leaving this place. I told them May. They said Oh! Only two months left. I almost cried.

    Emotional roller-coaster is right.

    Love you!

  4. time,
    our adversary...
    our ally...
    a little over two years ago,
    about four inches away,
    (on a map)
    you rode the same
    emotional roller-coaster
    (in america)
    and landed loved
    in Kisubi.
    time not waiting
    will place you hack,
    and you will land
    te amo