I wrote most of this post the week we arrived in Botswana but never finished it. I finally decided to finish and post it now. Note: this was before I was showing my pregnancy at all.
It was great to arrive in Botswana on Tuesday. Kagi’s mom and brothers and uncle were all waiting for us at the airport, along with another lady (we’ll call her Auntie) who I met on my last trip here. We were greeted with hugs and smiles, and ushered out to the waiting cars.
Arriving at the car, Auntie grabbed my hand and said with enthusiasm, “You’re too fat!” Not knowing what she meant, I smiled — it must be an English mis-speak. I don’t think I’m too fat, and certainly am much trimmer than she is. Sensing my confusion, she repeated her statement enthusiastically, “You’re too fat!”
Kagi saw the exchange and laughed. “She’s complimenting you, Laura!”
“I… I know, thank you,” I stammered.
Apparently I gained a few pounds during my first year of marriage, and this lady was genuinely happy for me. Honestly, it was sweet and funny, and I wasn’t offended. Maybe at another point in my life I would have been, but not this time.
The other factor is that the word too is used differently. It’s used instead of very or more. People often talk about your house being “too big,” meaning it’s nice and spacious. They don’t mean it’s ostentatious.
I love the way this points out cultural differences. My Canadian friend has shared similar stories. It’s funny to compare our often less than gracious reactions. Genuinely, comments like this are meant as compliments. I plan to take them as such.
I forgot to post again yesterday. Kagi and I went out in the early afternoon, and didn’t return home until midnight-ish and went straight to bed. We had a great day with friends.
One of the most significant moments of the day for me was meditating on this song:
We look forward to another big day tomorrow with lots of Easter festivities and friends visiting. We’re going out of town on Monday so Tuesday will probably be my earliest opportunity to blog again, but we shall see!
Today is such a special one of remembrance in the Christian calendar. We remember the day that Jesus celebrated Passover with the disciples, taught them to remember the gift of His life given for all of us and the new covenant God was offering through Him, and physically taking the role of a servant by washing their feet. We remember Jesus’ prayers for the disciples and all believers recorded in John 17. And we think about what led up to Good Friday when Jesus, though all powerful and innocent, died in my place.
I am excited for the coming weekend. I love having the opportunity to think about what He did, imagining I was there, grieving and rejoicing in the weighty but triumphant meaning of it all. I look forward to the dramatic conclusion to the story, when Jesus physically and spiritually conqueres death on Sunday morning.
Kagi and I travelled to Manchester today for me to see my friend Ffion, who is a dentist in training, and to visit Jaco and Aneke, Kagi’s pastor from Bots, who now live here too. We are now at their house.
I can’t type much but hope to share about our adventures in Manchester (and winter wonderland Bradford) when we get home!!!