Last night was sleepless, the weight of all of this, the fragility of me and the fact that I came to the genocide section in the memoir by the people studying the mountain gorillas in rwanda all conspiring to whack me awake. Got up really early this morning and wrote about my experienced, unvarnished, throwing away a half-finished chapter for a book I'm contributing to and doing in the moment meaning-making instead, cross legged in my bed, under the mosquito net.
At 645, went for a long walk on the kilembe road. People walking to work with burdens on their heads, machete at their sides, two or three on a bicycle, occasional boda bodas. The hills are magnificent, green and sensual and slightly hazy, the road curvy. Everyone smiled, said hello in the tones of someone deliberately using an unfamiliar tongue. Some goats by a house near a road charmed me, and I asked if I could take a picture of the family. The man clowned for me, the woman and the child ducked away, laughing and covering their faces. I showed them the pictures, went on.
On the way back, the man beckoned me in and called to another man to show me something. We went over a little hill and there was an amazing hot spring, about 40 C, with people bathing in it in their clothes. My "guide" was a congolese man who's teaching here, told me to put my hand in, that the men lying in it in their ragged pants were sick, that the spring was healing them. Another woman was bathing upstream, breasts naked, skirt wrapped around her waist. We spoke fractured french together and he taught me to say "goat" in swahili. Whatever it is I'm doing, well or badly, I'm taking it in.