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Meeting Suzy the Chicken

One afternoon I accommodated my father to the market to buy fresh fruit and vegetables.  As we started to walk past the meat stand, I saw a chicken whose head was about to be chopped off for someone’s dinner.  I immediately jerked my father’s hand and said, “Daddy can we buy her?  I would like a pet chicken”.  My father bought the chicken and placed her in my arms.  “Your name will be Suzy”, I told her.

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An Early Morning Hike to the Plateau of Zomba

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The Zomba Plateau

One morning in 1981, at the age of 7, I woke up before dawn and decided to go for a walk. I could see the sun starting to rise from behind one of the mountains ahead. “It’s doesn’t look that far away”, I thought to myself. I started to head that way. The villagers looked at me strangely like I was an alien that you just don’t see everyday. The lady’s were getting ready to place empty jars on their heads to pick up items at the next town over. I ignored them and kept on walking. The narrow dirt road got narrower and narrower until it turned into a path. “This must be it!”, I yelled in my head. I didn’t get very far until I started to feel something crawling up my legs that burned like fire. I looked down and realized that I had stepped in a fire ant hole.

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Birthday Parties in Lilongwe

Birthday parties for us kids were pretty elaborate.  We ate fancy food and even dressed up fancy too.  Today is Caryn’s 7th birthday party at her house.  She has invited her closest friends over.  Caryn just had her birthday cake brought out and we are about to sing Happy Birthday.

Photo credit: Caryn Lee Gross. Taken in 1984 or 1985