March 23, 2007

The big 3-0

Mon anni s'est bien passe. J'ai passe la journee en brousse et j'ai fete le soir en mangeant une brochette au Bar Bozo sur le bord de la Riviere Bani a Mopti en compagnie de 2 volontaires Peace Corps.

J'ai souffle une seule chandelle (une grosse chandelle de cire pour les pannes d'electricite) protegee de l'Harmattan par la nappe.

C'est pas typique mais le coeur y etait.

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I don’t think I am afraid to die. Maybe I a little bit afraid of the pain. For sure, I don’t want the people who have done me the privilege of caring for me to suffer. Their pain scares me probably more then my own. Death itself, however, does not scare me. Once it will have happened, I will cease to exist, or go where ever it is dead people go. I might see again my father, my grandparents, my uncles, and old friends who already passed on. Or I might see no one at all because there is no after life. One way or the other, I will not suffer. I don’t believe in Hell. More importantly, should it exist, I don’t believe there will be a spot for me there. I may be inconstant in my faith, but I am not Evil. So I am not afraid to die.

I am, however, very unready to die. I am hungry. Hungry for life, for love. Hungry for pleasure, experiences, knowledge, exploration. I wish I could live forever. If there was no end to my existence, I would probably become an incredibly knowledgeable being. I would read all there is to read. I would travel the world, as I really wish I could. Take time to stay places and become one with the foreign lands. I feel the world is a wondrous place.

After 18 months of roaming the Earth, having gone around the globe, been to four continents, 18 countries, met and adapted to many cultures, people, foods, landscapes, I feel unsated. If anything, my hunger is stronger then it was in September 2004 when I left for Senegal. When I think of all the countries, the cultures, the landscapes that are still up for discovery, I feel a vertigo of curiosity and eagerness. I have seen nothing. The world is so large, there is so much to do and to see. I feel that I am still ignorant and that there is still so much for me to experience.

I don’t want to die. I just turned 30, and it feels like a death sentence. I wish I didn’t have to deal with the inevitable questions that I have been pressed with for the last few months. What of my destiny? I have been asked to make some decisions. Will I settle down or pursue my military service in the humanitarian industry? Will I trade my chains for other ties?

It is so frustrating to think that alas, I am mortal. That I love life, the Earth and the humans who live and die on it so much the thought if leaving it all one day aches in my chest. My late father used to have a strong appetite for life and when he passed, this appetite passed on to me. He, of all the people I knew, was fully aware that we, mere mortals, are given so little time in this world. As he did, I intend to make the most of what I’ve been given, though for now, I do not know how.
The Beaver

My guest map is wonderful ! And you'd all be wonderful to post, all of you lurk mode readers!
Thanks and may the winds of Fate blow your way !

4 comments:

Qalamana said...

Why should death cause any pain? Why should it imply suffering? I assume it as part of the process of living, nothing else... if you've had a pleasant and productive life you shouldn't see it as something to be afraid of, just the opposite: the rest of the warrior...
Take care :)
Besines!

Saur♥Kraut said...

Boy do I understand this. 30 was a horrible, unnerving birthday for me. 40 wasn't much better. Each one is a terrible milestone in an otherwise good life: Perhaps instead of being a signifier of our mortality, it is something that reminds us that our options are growing narrower and our choices are fewer.

BTW, perhaps you can explain something to me that I always wonder about: You say you don't believe in hell, but you're not afraid to die because you're not Evil. But if there is no hell, then even Evil people shouldn't be afraid to die...(?)

It's both easier and harder for me; I believe in heaven AND hell. ;o)

Beaver said...

hehe well noted my curious friend.

I don't beleive in the traditionnal conception of hell, is what I should say.

My religious beleifs are more along the line of Buddhism and/or Hindouisn. It's what happens when you travel a lot.

Anyway, we all talk to the same Head Honcho. It's just the rituals and imagery that vary.

007 in Africa said...

HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY Birthday!!! I miss you lots and hope that you will come back to my side of the earth soon. xoxoxo