November 10, 2004

The weather cools down

The weather is noticeably cooler now and it's possible to sleep a full night without having to wake up for water or drenched with sweat. I am sleeping 10 hours nights and it's not rare that I doze off while reading a book by 8:30PM (I'm reading Grape of Wrath, but still it's odd). In the mornings, I find that my face has been lined with creases from the pages pressing against my face and I haven't had time to do half the things I needed to take care of. Thank god I have a maid.

I am noticeably more efficient and cheerful. This weather is perfect, with light breezes that curl up into your room. The walk to work is pleasant; I don't have to squint my eyes from the sun or use the ubiquitous handkerchief to brush my brow. I am seeing clouds in the sky for the first time in months. I love it.

This morning I passed the two begging lepers with fingers missing to their first joints and thick glasses and waved hello. I even smiled at the man in the wheel chair, though I disapprove of him (he is a hustler of sorts): he monitors the men with leprosy closely, takes their money when they have amassed sufficient amounts and oogles at them when they should be more aggressive with passerbys.

I am sensing a general malaise and don't quite know what to make of it. I figure people are so conditioned to the hot weather that they are uncomfortable with 70 degrees weather.

I saw a cortege of car parked in front of my apartment this morning, with teenagers cleaning and polishing them. I giggled, thinking that it was a good sign that it was about to rain. But no rain in sight so far. The rainy season has passed and gone and I would be surprised to see it rain out of season. Things are generally like that here: there's a rainy season and a dry season, a mango season, a watermelon season, there's a regular season and a Ramadan season. Nature doesn't really surprise you it seems, it follows its rules pretty closely.

The vegetable season is upon us soon. This doesn't mean that new, innovating vegetables will be cropping up in markets (you can only get onions, potatoes, zucchini, eggplants, tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, and a plethora of strange African vegetables). This just means that vegetables will be affordable again and I can get my vitamins and other essential nutrients.

Tomorrow, I leave for Kaolack for business.

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