Monday, April 9, 2012

A series of journal thoughts...Part 3

You are soft!

Several times in the last months, I have been told that I am “soft.” This word soft refers to a few things. 

I get hurt easily. I hit my limbs on doors as I walk through. I burn myself on candles and stoves. I walk through a gravel path and get a stone lodged into my heel (true story, lots of blood, scarred already, still not sure how it happened…) In short, I get hurt easily; I am soft.

The other reasons are more speculative, but in my understanding, it comes down to the fact that I’m white. My skin looks soft, even delicate to most Ugandans. Kids love to rub my arms, legs, and hair. They tell me my skin is softer than theirs; I don’t feel the difference though…guess I will take their word for it. 

I have also not been through enough hardship in my life to have tough skin…literally and figuratively. “We Ugandans, we endure,” is a commonly heard expression here….for good reason.  I have heard it at least a dozen times. How could they not endure if they want any chance of surviving? People get sick, injured, lose loved ones, get abandoned by husbands and parents, go hungry or thirsty for days…yet they endure. They are not soft. 

I however, am softer than Charmin Ultra toilet paper.

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