Saturday, October 4, 2008


WARNING: This post is not for mommies or other people who worry.

Last night I had the opportunity to go out with a few other expats, one guy from the American embassy and several people from Doctor's Without Borders.  They briefly mentioned a volunteer who had recently arrived in Nigeria.  His body was flown home about two weeks ago.  His program was in Port Harcourt, an area that can be quite dangerous.  But he never made it there.  His first day in the country, right here in Abuja, he was electrocuted in the shower.

On hearing the story, I remembered Peace Corps volunteers who had died or come very close to dying in Zambia.  (Besides my friends and family members in my village.)  There was a girl just the year before I arrived who died in a bicycle accident.  Another volunteer died while I was there.  The day before his graduation ceremony from training, he fell out a window several stories up.  Then, there was the volunteer who didn't take a single pill of his malaria medication.  His malaria symptoms didn't show until he was on vacation in a non-malaria zone.  Not recognizing his illness for what it was, the doctors were unable to give him the proper treatment.  I have heard many say it's a miracle he is still alive, and he will have health problems for the rest of his life.

Being in the capital, with cars and electricity and running water and internet, it's easy to forget that it's still Africa and still dangerous.   And really, no matter where we live, we can't take life for granted.

I'm glad I'm lucky enough to be here enjoying everything.  God said He'd watch over me, and He's doing it.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some adorable little girls to go play with.


Anonymous said...

i love you!! and am glad God is watching over you :-****

Jeannie said...

With a warning like that, you know my curiousity would be peaked and I'd have to read....I am very glad God is watching over you, too. I want you to live a long life - wherever you live. Love you lots *******ooooooo