Monday, 4 February 2013

Cannibals, Teepees and other Tall Tales

I must point out, that this post is all in good humor.  It's good to laugh at ourselves, and find the funny in life.  I am always laughing at our own African newcomer mistakes here in America, so the shoes on the other foot now!

When we first arrived in the USA, Jessica met my uncle Jb and launched into a long and detailed story of "life-in-Africa".  Uncle JB allowed her to spin the tale about lions at our back door, riding to school on elephant back and wearing skins, she was doing quite well until she told him we lived in teepees! Little did she realize at the time that Uncle JB is in fact also African, and he had grown up in Northern Rhodesia when it was a wild and rugged country, quite similar to her tale in fact!

Siobhan's cannibal stories
The kids have discovered, to their delight, that they can pull the wool over the eyes of their classmates.  All thanks to media which portrays Africa as 1) Filled with people who need medical or food aid 2) Wildlife.  So, when our kids went to school for the first time in America, they were rubbing their hands with glee at the tall tales they could tell.  Siobhan took the cake when she told a bully that she was a Cannibal.  Admittedly, the 14 year old boy deserved to be intimidated by our petite 15 year old, since he was using his vast girth and weight to crush little 9 year olds against the side of the bus.  However we discouraged Siobhan from perpetuating the myth further, since rumors fly fast and furious in a small town.

One man asked what we do for a living, in Africa.  Stuart mentioned that he was a pilot, and I told him that I am a graphic designer.  The man blinked and said "on a computer?" I realized that he could not believe we had computers in Africa.  I reassured him that although we ride to work on Elephant back, we have solar powered laptops.  Couldn't resist.  He took it in good humor. The American's have a great sense of humor.

1 comment: