Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Sudanese Christmas.

Summer is upon us with a vengeance. With highs in the 90’s, I find any excuse to hide in the shade and siesta all afternoon. Doesn’t the weather care that it’s December and things should be cold, icy and white? Apparently not.

In fact, it’s pretty hard to believe it’s even Christmas. It feels like Vegas mid-June with gusty breezes that dry our laundry in seconds! Under its intense heat, everything withers and wilts -even my Christmas spirit.

I tried lifting those spirits by playing Christmas music. But it didn’t help. Brown grass, sweltering heat and tank-tops. That is my life right now. Not to mention, a thin layer of fine yellow dust coats EVERYTHING. I wake up to my face caked in yellow dust. It’s in my teeth. I cannot escape it.

And I am dry. Very dry. My lips. My skin. My eyes. My hair. One wrong move and I might chip off and flake away. And with these winds, who knows where I might end up! Uganda perhaps?

Christmas as I know it has been transformed. Gone are the cut out snow flakes. Gone are the thoughts of hot cocoa and wool mittens! Honestly, how do you sing, “Dashing through the SNOW, on a one horse open sleigh....” here without laughing? It’s totally ridiculous.

Even the traditional Christmas Carols start taking on whole new meanings. When I sing, “Away in a manger, no crib for a bed...”, I imagine a mud tukul surrounded by cows and goats. It, too, is covered in a thin layer of fine yellow dust and so is baby Jesus! Ha!

Christmas. Christmas in Sudan. *Sigh*

I do have to say there is one HUGE benefit in spending Christmas here. I am not ‘shopping’ or ‘running around’ or ‘holiday stressing’. I’m stress free. I feel no obligation to shop and not even a hint of stress. It’s pretty nice.

No. It’s REALLY nice.

So, if I can be so bold. I pray that you all are having a Sudanese Christmas -- stress free and hot! (minus the layer of yellow dust!)