My tutor, Hamida, came over to my house for a language lesson this evening. Lesson usually means we sit and chat for a while, then maybe read a few pages out of a portuguese book or my text book, then go back to talking till an hour or two has passed. Our discussions are rather desultory. We share basic information about our families, friends, favorite food, and our homes, but I am always delighted when we get to meaty topics like African witches, how to get rid of rats, what malaria feels like, the importance of quality hand-calluses, etc. Our conversations consists of a lot of me saying something in broken portuguese/spanish/english – then Hamida corrects me, I repeat the phrase 2 or 3 times, then we move on until the next solecism is committed.
Tonight’s lesson was especially funny, since Hamida arrived and immediately announced that she wanted to braid my hair. “Really? Okay!” but 20 minutes into the styling, the power went out, so Hamida continued to work away for the next hour and a half in the dark while wearing my head-lamp.
I’ll let you just enjoy the photo of my new corn-rows. I resemble a bona fide Caribbean tourist. Perhaps a bit stupid looking, but I plan to rock them for at least a few days. I don’t really have any one to impress here, and it’ll certainly make Hamida happy. So please, have a giggle at my expense.
Sadly, the braids came out after just 3 days – the humidity didn’t keep them looking very classy. However I did get to have a crimped coiffure for another day. Having naturally very strait hair, it was rather exciting to have a bit of fluff and texture but more so I looked like a flash from the 80s past.