rummaging through a basket in my kitchen, i happened across a package of ch*nese sunflower seeds. an obsession of mine when i was there the last two summers. i brought back several packages thinking folks back home would enjoy them as much as i had.
they do have a unique flavor, but i really love them. but for people here, it's an unfamiliar and strange taste. and they weren't there. tasting the flavors of that wonderful place. or smelling the smells, hearing the sounds. . .
finding those sunflower seeds brought me right back to all of the sounds, sights and smells of a country i dearly love.
i've never much cared for eggplant here in the US. but there? ohmygracious. . . it's amazing. one of my absolute favorites! and there is nothing better than fresh vegetables. they are sold in open air markets all over and come straight from the fields. mmmmm. i get hungry just thinking about it.
we craved bread while we were there. all you can find is sweet bread, almost like a cake. and decorated to the nines. things are pretty inexpensive there, but i remember the prices on the breads being pretty outrageous. but they were so pretty, you just wanted to scoop them all up! (but the flavor is oh-so-disappointing!)shopping there was a hoot. the walmart an experience. absolutely packed with people, and checking out was a riot (hilarious, and somewhat riot-like, too). with the concepts of "lines," "taking ones turn" and "personal space" being fairly non-existant, my efforts to get my selections paid for was almost an international incident.
most of all, i miss the people. the relationships we established. the lives we honored by just showing up, listening, playing and loving. they made it easy. such open arms of welcome.
i hate that things didn't work out this year. my heart aches just a little bit.
i'm trying not to waste my time while i wait to return. i'll be practicing loving on students and listening. (i need to work extra hard on that skill)
i'm longing to return. . . to make a difference in this world.