Friday, September 12, 2008

Minnesota to Burkina Faso

A Tuareg family in northern Burkina Faso that became one of my many African extended families that over the nearly 20 years I lived and worked on the continent, that helped, supported and guided me. Did you notice my blue eyes in the photo?

Family photo in 1975 on the farm in northern Minnesota ..... my folks sitting in front, then left to right ... Jerry, Carol, Darvin, Nancy and then.... Leslie

I grew up on a small farm in northern Minnesota, near the tiny town of Borup .... (okay... it's close to Fargo, North Dakota .. if that helps....)

In Burkina Faso, I lived about 10 kilometers outside of Ouagadougou, the capital city, in a round mud hut. Bamboo bed with a hard mattress filled with a white, cotton like substance from the Baobab trees. A mousquito net over my bed kept most of the bugs out ... and on those extremely hot nights.... the heat in! Grass thatched roof, provided a home for the termites and wasps.

I worked for VITA (Volunteers in Technical Assistance) at that time, helping to establish a Regional Appropriate Technology Center ... for which I was able to get a million dollar grant to build and furnish the center. This was in the late 1970s.

No electricity in my mud hut .... only kerosene lamps to give me light when writing my journal .... which I did religiously for nearly ten years. No running water either at my rural compound ..... it was a simple life ... I experienced spectacular sunrises every morning and equally beautiful sunsets every evening. I knew when the moon was full and when it was not!

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About Me

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Left the land of milk and honey for a spiritual nomadic life.