Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Top Five Tuesday:
Round Trip To Africa

It's five in the morning and I have been traveling for over 24 hours. The plane from Casablanca to Nouakchott, Mauritania finally decides to make its way to the terminal. We were scheduled to board the flight at 1:30 but now we are on "Africa time." I quickly find out that that means there is no rush to get anything accomplished with the exception of birthing a child. Aching for the site of anything resembling a bed I board the plane. A man comes up claiming to have the window seat. Damn, not to mention he’s about three times my size. The perfect size to block my aisle seat view of the window. The only thing that can save me now is my trusty iPod.

Throughout my adventures in Africa I helped deliver babies, screened people for different diseases and ailments, doled out medication like a real professional and, of course, listened to music. The Mauritanian music was an experience in itself. The entire village of Hamidad greeted our team with drums, dancing, and singing. Unfortunately I was unable to procure the videotape one of my classmates captured of this extraordinary event. In consolation I have selected five songs that, in some form or another, may give you a glimpse into my African adventure.

5. Air – "Universal Traveler"
The "Universal Traveler" lyrics say it all. "I know so many places in the world/I follow the sun in my silver plane/ Universal traveler/ If you have a look/ Outside on the sea/ Everything is white/ It’s so wonderful/ Universal traveler/ So far, so far/ So far away…" The song continues to tell the story of how one meets people along their journey and ends on a hopeful note eliciting thoughts of future travel.

4. Sun Ra – "We Travel The Spaceways"
So I didn’t travel to outer space but Africa is close enough, right?

3. Bobby Darin – "You Must Have Been A Beautiful Baby"
"I caught babies in Africa." Sounds weird, huh? Any of my nursing folk can tell you that catching a baby (at least for a student) is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Africa, unlike the US, holds minimal restrictions around their health care system. Students can do just about anything, which includes delivering children. In honor of one particular blue baby (aka not breathing and in need of resuscitation) I have selected this little ditty by Bobby Darin. This baby girl fought for her life and won. Close to a week after her birth she came back to the clinic for a check-up. I examined her and she was doing as well as could be expected. She was a beautiful baby and Bobby sings it best.

2. Explosions In The Sky – "What Do You Go Home To?"
"What Do You Go Home To?" brings back memories of the flight home. I was longing to be near familiar surroundings. I deeply missed my friends, Ryan, and Andre 6000. This piece and I possessed both melancholy and mirthful tones – perfect for the return trip home.

1. Simon & Garfunkel – "Homeward Bound"
I could not have asked for a more applicable song for my return to the United States. "Home where my thought’s escaping/ home where my music’s playing/ home where my love lies waiting…" "Homeward Bound" is a classic song that will never go out of style.




Femme Fatale said...

Way cool.

Hackworth Artifex said...

Now I have to go listen to some Simon & Garfunkel. hehe