Books Worth a Look

  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave - This book is a must read. Better than anything else I've read, it takes you vividly into the life of a person in the 3rd world who has no choice but to escape. It is brilliantly written & works well as an audio book. Often I've sent info about the wonderful refugees I've met in Europe. We know only so much of their plight as it is painful for them to recall much less live through again by recounting it. But over time it is clear what they've lived through. This book is excellent as you discover the horrors of their world. Somewhat how to me, it is like being in Europe near a Concentration Camp. One has an obligation to visit it. 'Never to Forget.' In this case, to have our eyes opened.
  • Garbage King by Eliz Laird - The book is set on the streets on Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia and here lives Mamo and his sister Tiggist. When Mamo's "uncle" offers a job, he soon sets out on a bus to work. Little does he know that he is actually being sold into slavery...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Touching Last Day

My last day was a full one. I had thought to cook a Turkey Thanksgiving style meal for all. Then I realized (dah!) that the guys at the house (asylum seekers) do not get meat there and that their own cooking would be great for them. Several are very good cooks.

So the morning was taken with shopping in the markets:

Hallel lamb for an Iranian dish - it was excellent.

Fresh chicken for an Algerian dish - tasty with olives and a nice broth.

Fish, mackerel, for a Congo dish - quite good.

Basmati rice - for Teodros popular rice - yummy! esp. w/ the lamb.

topped off w/ cans of John Smith and Stella Artois.

Barry, the older British gent I introduced 7 weeks ago took me to breakfast.

I had purchased small gifts, calling card to Bolivia, Iran, Algeria etc. Wrapping paper was tabloid newspapers!

In the afternoon, we went to the cafe to say goodbye & give Barry a birthday present. He's 65 on Saturday.

Good buys were heartfelt: those living rough, young professionals etc.

In the evening 13 of us sat down to a sumptuous dinner. Lots of good cheer, laughs and pictures. they gave me a lovely good bye card and two Oxfam gift cards that tell who is being taken care of in our name.

The gifts went well. Lots of laughs. Several heartfelt conversation privately. Emotional good bys. I understand the kissing on both sides of the face, but one ethnic group kisses you non-stop. Oh well!!!!

A truly touching evening. Such good men who face incredible obstacles yet have much joy and are a joy to live with.

Off to the airport in 90 minutes. Amanuel insists in accompanying me on the bus - no doubt taking my luggage!


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Thoughts on the amazing people I get to meet.

Rich, my 19 year old friend, soon to be Franciscan and recent community member at Haley House in Boston. An article he wrote.