How do you miss Africa? How do you not see a continent the size of Africa coming? I have no explanation, but over the last few months I’ve been unexpectedly sideswiped by Africa. I was driving straight ahead and out of nowhere the continent struck me. Now it’s spun me completely out of control. I’m reaching for wheel to correct myself, but it wont respond. So I’m just letting the car spin. I believe that once the spinning stops, I’ll be headed in a totally different direction. And I’m afraid I’ll going to drag my whole family down the new road with me. (Or maybe I needed a collision to get headed in the direction they were already headed.) All I know now is that Africa is full up in the windscreen and every time I see it pass by, I start crying and wondering what this sudden crash means.
Andy (my son-in-law) may be in the same spinning car with me. He just added a new verse to his song: It’s not in my backyard. He’s been singing it to me in hopes that I might get a hold of the wheel. The verse goes like this:
Living the dream, while Africa screams.
We bow, kneel and pray, God Bless the USA,
Let Freedom Reign.
Four million dead, while we sleep in our beds,
8,000 a day we let pass away, as death runs through their veins.
It’s Not in My Backyard, So I’ll just look away.
You can’t let down your guard, better play it safe,
or you might fall into someone else’s bad day.
Sorry I can’t stay. But it’s not in my backyard.
No matter how much we sing this to each other—it looks like the car will be headed to Timbuktu . . . or Freetown . . . or somewhere else southeast of here, over a big ocean and into someone else’s bad day. (more later)