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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Independence Day......Week

But of course no 4th of July will be quite the same if we did not get to set ablaze our own fireworks.

We had a good laugh at the cicadas who all were noticeably louder every time the sparkling and crackling came to an end.  Almost as if they were scolding us from their bedroom windows "Can you please turn down the volume?"  Followed by our retort "Just one more!"

Our girls love this family tradition.  Comments like "Wow!"  and "That's so awesome!"  and of course the inevitable question "Did you ever do this in Africa when you were a kid?"  dotted our conversations.

They are so curious about our childhood in Africa.  I don't recall being like that when I was young, but then again I did not grow up with immigrant parents speaking a foreign language and all my family living overseas.

I've had to explain more than once that we lived a life very similar to theirs, but only in Africa.  They have a hard time wrapping their heads around this because all they saw in school about Africa and what they were told about Africa were about the poor,  undeveloped, mud hut communities.  Which do exist (lets not kid ourselves), but it instilled a very one-sided view of the second largest continent on planet earth.  Not only do they have a hard time believing this, but when I bring to their attention the strife and hardship happening within this wonderful country called the USA, they don't quite get that either.  Really?  They still have so much to learn.

We are looking forward to showing them around in South Africa and sharing experiences with them from our childhood.  I have a whole month set aside for them learning about the South African history and geography while visiting our home country with lots of opportunities to see, smell, touch, taste and feel what this part of Africa is really like.  I would like for them to dance to the beat of African drums with the Zulus in a boma, cuddle and feed a baby cheetah in their natural surroundings;  stand on top of Table Mountain staring down over Cape Town with it's 800,000 + households sparkling far below in the dark and feed a hungry crowd waiting in line all day for a sandwich.

Most of all I can't wait to see how family bonds are strengthened and how those little light bulbs go off and our children grow and evolve in every sense of the word right in front of our eyes.