I’ve been back from Guyana for three months now and thought I’d seen my friends down there a little update. Here’s what I sent:
I’ve now been back in the US for three months, the same amount of time we spent together in training. I think about you often and wanted to send you an update.
THINGS I MISS:
I really miss playing cards, drinking beer and rum, hackey sacking, and playing ultimate Frisbee with you all. I haven’t played Knaves, hackied, or thrown a Frisbee since my return. Of course, I also haven’t sat around for hours in plastic lawn furniture while drowning in my own sweat either, but let’s stick to the good things.
I also miss Banks beer and Guyana’s rum. I’ve even searched a few liquor stores that carry some rare imports to no avail. But I will say, three months in Guyana really did increase my tolerance for alcohol. About a month ago, I attend Elon’s homecoming (my alma mater) and had no problem keeping up with my fellow fraternity brothers.
Salt fish in the house!
I don’t think that I’ve heard a single car horn since my return, and that includes the trip I took to New York City. Deprived, I conducted an experiment one day by driving my dad’s car through downtown Raleigh while randomly honking the horn for no apparent reason. As expected, my behavior was both confusing and intolerable for many.
I’ve also tried sipping at people while in malls or in passing. In Raleigh, I got a lot of weird and disgusting looks. In New York City, however, people just ignored me for I simply fitted in with the rest of the weirdoes.
Speaking of NYC, there really are a lot of Guyanese living there. On my first day in town, I met two of them. They were both bellmen, each working at a separate building. Don’t recall how I discovered they were Guyanese, but they were thrilled when I said I’d be back “Just now.” It’s still fun to use the lingo every now and then.
THINGS YOU’VE MISSED:
Let’s see, it’s fall, so the state fair was in town. You missed tossing rings onto Coke bottles, stomach wrenching rides like the Zipper, and the most unhealthy foods you can imagine like fried Oreos and pork-butt-on-a-stick.
You also missed college and professional sports. I’ve been to several NC State football games, which ended the season 10-3. Their last game was against Florida State. It featured all of the fanfare of a televised game: fireworks, hip-hop music to pump up the crowd, high-flying cheerleaders, a huge TV featuring instant replays and game stats, and even the tearing down of the goal posts after the game. I’ve also been to a few hockey games. Remember ice?
Speaking of ice, I haven’t taken a cold shower or bucket bath since my return. In fact, one morning, I turned on the shower and there was no hot water. What did I do? Well, if you think I bucked it up and took a cold shower, you couldn’t be more wrong. I went downstairs, turned on the hot water heater, and waited 30 minutes for things to warm back up. Yep, I’m a spoiled softy once again.
But things back in the US haven’t been all roses. The Washington DC area had a few weeks of terror as a sniper randomly took out about a dozen citizens in the metro area. The sniper targeted kids, elders, blacks, whites, Hispanics; you name it. The police, FBI, and CIA were puzzled. Eventually they caught the guys.
The stock market and job market continue to be in the slumps. So if you are hoping you nest egg will have grown during your departure, keep hoping.
On a similar note, I continue my quest for a web development job. I average an interview or two a week, so at least there’s something on my resume that is attracting employers. I have even turned down one offer, for farm live in New York just didn’t appeal to me.
Have a happy thanksgiving. I’ll be in the North Carolina Mountains and will be sure to eat a slice of turkey just for you.