TODAY IS ONE OF THOSE DAYS
Some days, I really miss Africa.
Admittedly, I miss it every day that I'm not there, but some days it is such a deep missing that it makes an ache deep within me and tears are near to the surface.
Today is one of those days.
I miss a lot of things about Africa, and in particular, Swaziland.
I miss the cheerful children who smile so easily.
I miss the laughter and joyful singing.
I miss the integration of the generations and the respect for the elderly.
I miss shopping at the marketplace.
I miss eating mealie meal pap.
I miss the houses with their cool walls and the thatched roofs unlike any here in Mississippi.
I miss church services that aren't bound by time schedules.
I miss relationships and spending time with friends receiving higher priority than television shows, efficiency, and getting somewhere on time.
I miss the mountains.
I miss sparkling Grapetiser served at restaurants.
I miss the fat, dark, babies with their big eyes riding on their mama, grandma, or big sister's backs.
I miss picking up hitch-hiking grandmas and mothers with children.
I miss bright colors and patterns all thrown together, not worrying about what some fashion or design guru has to say.
I miss monkeys scampering about.
I miss the exuberance of the Swazis and never being told I'm being too loud.
I miss dunking my buttermilk Ouma rusk in a steaming hot cup of rooibos tea.
I miss splashing waterfalls and lush green surroundings.
I miss dancing during church and also at weddings.
I miss a culture that doesn't determine your worth by how small the numbers are on your pants' label.
I miss the sound of rain on the metal roofs.
I miss the camaraderie of missionaries.
I miss spending time with Africans who are dedicated to serving their Lord as they love the precious "least of these" around them.
I miss waving enthusiastically to children alongside the roadway and having them respond enthusiastically.
I miss that Easters and Christmases that aren't uber-commercialized, over-stressed, too-busy affairs.
I miss long prayer times born out of the knowledge that God is really, really needed and really, really our King.
I miss Africa.