Wednesday, January 14, 2009
There have been countless times that my pen has met paper to begin documenting the journey of my childhood memories… and each time it starts with the same memory, as vivid in my mind as it was when i was five… running through the tall grass in the Selous, Tanzania, to the outer edges of the camp where the skinners’ hut used to be… The grass being so tall and thick and shimmering like a sea of molten gold, high above my small head…. above, a sky of the deepest, most brilliant blue you have ever seen. Dozens of Marabou stork taking flight from within the reeds to the sound of my rumbling feet, fearful that I may be a predator ready to pounce on them with the speed of light. I reveled in their fear of me! My laughter being carried by the winds far across the landscape… the laughter of a happy, smiling, giggling 5 year old girl with big brown eyes and dirty blonde hair and an entire 20,000 square miles of untouched land as her playground! But despite all the distractions there was always one end in sight: reaching the skinners hut! It was a very dangerous affair you see… for predators also loved the skinners hut…. and for obvious reasons….
This memory is still my favorite, my most vivid, my most alive…. perhaps my mind over the years has embellished things…. perhaps that grass today would only be knee high and those hills not so far away in the distance… and maybe it wasn’t as long a hike as i remember it being… now that my stride is longer…. but for some reason I end up crumpling my paper and throwing it in the rubbish bin every time I begin to write about it… perhaps fate is telling me not to write? Is there a reason why I remain so unsatisfied with my recollections? My own harshness towards myself when it comes to translating my thoughts into written text…? Or perhaps it is merely the fact that some memories cannot be captured on paper to a “T” because in our minds they are sacred…. but when written and then read they seem to lose significance… perhaps writing it down would mean devaluing my memory, making it more real and less dream-like… or perhaps I have been suffering from writer’s block for the last 10 years of my life…..