My friend Marilyn is off on another
Mercy Ship adventure in Africa. Those
who followed her story before on the
Africa Mercy know that Marilyn is a
volunteer nurse on a hospital ship that
sails the African coast in search of patients.
She emails me and I share her post with you.
I hope you enjoy!
25 March, 2017 "Children, stilt village, dresses"
Our surgeon went to the ward to visit our patients one evening and found
a mother crying. I guess they were tears of joy, because her
explanation was that her blind children had been considered cursed,
devil-possessed, in her village, so no one would allow their children to
play with hers. "Now they won't think they are cursed any more." I
tend to think about the physical limitations imposed by being
blind...but the social ramifications can be even more devastating.
Whole families can be shunned.
There's a whole village nearby which is built on stilts in the middle of
the lake. The story behind that is interesting. They were apparently
peaceful fishermen back in the day and were being captured and sold into
slavery by the voodoo-worshiping tribes around them. The voodoo people
were afraid of water, so the fishermen moved into the middle of the lake
two hundred years ago to stay safe from them, and there they remain to
this day, still fishing. Everyone has his own canoe, even the children.
Fabrics here are so colorful, with bold patterns and amazing variety.
It's true everywhere in West Africa, but seems even more so here. Women
here really know how to dress up! Hair styles, too, are creative and
diverse. Who knew you could do so many things with kinky black hair?
If I can, I'll attach a few random pictures, but I can't possibly
capture the rainbow variety in all its glory.