Skip to main content

A Study in Contrasts

I've been thinking about some of the contrasts between Niger and Pennsylvania.
















NIGER: Trees are few and far between in Niger. It is simply too hot and dry for them to thrive.







PENNSYLVANIA: Trees are everywhere here in Pennsylvania. I am really enjoying looking out my living room window right into the woods!








NIGER: Hard, rocky soil abounds. Wide open spaces are everywhere. There seems to be a total lack of color. Well, brown IS a color....but it's rather monochromatic. Believe it or not, Niger does turn green between June and October!











PENNSYLVANIA: There are so many different shades of green with surprising bursts of color. There are trees and hills rather than wide open spaces.












NIGER: We have absolutely no grass in our yard. It is all sand. We do have some flowering bushes, though!






PENNSYLVANIA: Grass and flowers are everywhere. I love sitting or lying in the grass! Flowers abound here at MRF...food for the eyes!







NIGER: Somebody planted this millet in our yard last year. They waited too late and it wasn't a very good rainy season, anyway. But isn't it pitiful looking?!





PENNSYLVANIA: A farmer's field of corn. What a contrast!



You may think a person would love the prettiest place most, wouldn't you? But it's not true! Niger, in spite of all it's monotonous brown and stark scenery is beautiful to me! Why? Because it's home!





And we do have some beauty! Here is one of the flowering bushes in our yard. We also have pink and yellow bushes like this (bouganvilla).



Most of all, we have learned to love Niger's people, people who survive in spite of the harshness and lack of beauty. That's what makes it home to us.

Comments

journeyer said…
Nancy,
so glad the post ended on a happy note. I was getting worried. . . although I am very glad to hear you are enjoying PA. How much longer will you be there?

Also, I've never seen a white boganvia. That's so cool. We had pink ones in AZ, but never white.
Still following your blog...most of the time directly from my feed reader, but I am still amazed at the similarities between the Philippines and Africa! Although this particular post doesn't apply in terms of color, flowers, trees and etc. I am thinking of the time when your husband went to the hospital to help get the right medicine for the patient and because the patient had a "powerful white man" lobbying for him received the proper medicine. A form of prejudice against their own people. Just like here...Thank the Lord for the good things we can influence!
Amanda said…
I love comparisons like this. When I was in uni I did a whole series of paintings with comparisions like this. Its a theme I really want to continue, especially when it shows our similarities as well as our differences. Great post!
Cindy said…
It is 'home' isn't it!!
Thanks for your prayers. I am praying for you!! Everyday!

Popular posts from this blog

Practice Hospitality

My mother-in-law, Jean, is an amazing person with many gifts.  One of the first things I noticed about her when I was but a young bride, was her gift of hospitality.  It was nothing for her to invite a large group of people over, make each one feel welcome, cook a big meal,and seemingly do it without stressing herself out.  I don't know if hospitality just came naturally to her or if she learned it.  In this picture you can see Jean throwing a party for a class she taught in Nigeria.  




I believe that for me it has been a learned skill.  My parents were hospitable and it wasn't unusual for us to have guests over (though usually not as many at a time as my mother-in-law would do!).  But when I started living on my own, I had to learn hospitality.  The first time I invited somebody over for a meal, the lid got stuck on the pot of vegetables, I put too much salt or soda or something in the muffins, and I forgot to serve milk and sugar with the hot drinks.  I've gotten much bett…

Meat Roll-ups

Tonight I made meat roll-ups.  And I got to use some ingredients that made food prep much easier than normal!  I did make two batches of rolls so that John could have a lactose-free meal.

The first thing to do is to brown some hamburger.  With the main batch I stirred a tin of mushroom soup into the browned meat.  For John's batch, I stirred in flour, some almond milk, and seasonings just enough to moisten it, but not to make it really runny.  In Niger, I would make it the second way since we don't have tinned soup.

Next I made a batch of biscuit dough using Bisquick.  Of course, in Niger, I have to make the biscuit dough from scratch.  I mixed it up with the almond milk.  Once the dough is rolled out in a strip, spread the meat mixture on it.  Roll it up like you would cinnamon rolls and cut into slices.  Lay the slices on a cookie sheet and cook in a 350 oven for about 20 minutes.



While they're baking, I browned fresh mushrooms in butter (in Niger I would use tinned mushroo…

Happenings in November

Well, here we are, more than half way through December, and I'm just now getting around to telling you about November.  It was a fun, busy, and eventful month.  We were still on vacation and we got in a lot of good family time during the month.

We were still in Ohio with Suz and Theo at the beginning of the month.  Suz and Theo were working hard to get Hezekiah to gain weight.  He kept losing weight for the first few weeks of his life, but he's doing great now.  We tried to spend as much time as possible with Tera so Suzanne could concentrate on adjusting to the new baby ... but mostly just because we wanted to and we enjoy her so much.  





We also tried to get in as many baby snuggles as we could.



Whenever we are in the area, my dad's cousin, Jeanne, invites us for a meal. She is actually closer to me in age than to my dad, so I've always just considered her a cousin and don't try to figure out if she's a second cousin or a first cousin once removed.  Whatever the …