“Sweet are the thoughts that savour of content, The quiet mind is richer than a crown…”

It rained last night leaving today cloudy and dark. It’s warmer than it has been. All my chores and errands got finished, scratched out. Today is a stay at home day. Right now Boris Karloff as The Mummy is on TV. I have seen this movie several times, but that doesn’t ever matter. A propeller plane circles the world, the eerie music starts, and we see Egypt and the desert. We’re at a dig: it’s 1931, and the mummified remains of Imhotep, who had been buried alive, have just been found. A warning on the top of the chest buried with the mummy warns that whoever opens the chest will die. Despite the warning the chest is opened, the sacred words are said and the mummy comes back to life. There’s more but not here.

In winter, cloudy days sometimes make me feel subdued, and, after several in a row, even melancholic while other cloudy days, like today, make me feel cozy in my warm house. Life doesn’t get much better than being in my comfy clothes and watching one of my favorites, a black and white science fiction movie from the 30’s. I’m even having Chinese for lunch. It’s one of those perfect days.

When I was in Ghana, I lived alone for the first time. My house, one side of a duplex, was brand new and on school grounds right by the back gate, which I had to climb a few times as the watchman chose not to hear me yelling for the gate to be opened. (Sorry for the digression. Back to the story.) I was really lonely the first few months. I hated the quiet of my house. I played music especially at night to ward off the silence, but, by Christmas, I relished the night-time quiet because every day was busy and filled with sounds. In the morning it was the swishing of the hand- held brooms as the students cleaned the compound. After that, I could hear buckets being filled with water for bathing and the conversations of my students in a variety of languages. From that morning time on, the day was only quiet after the students had lights out.

It is always a marvel to me that life in Ghana took on a routine, became every day. Here I was living on a school compound in Bolgatanga. It was eggs and toast and coffee, horrible coffee, for breakfast, fruit for lunch and chicken or beef with a sauce and yams on the side, sometimes fried but mostly mashed, for dinner. I went to the market every third day and filled my basket with vegetables and fruit. The amazement of living in Africa was replaced by familiarity. It was home.

I think the memory of living in Ghana surfaces on days like today. I recognize the comfort in the quiet I felt then and I’m feeling now. It is contentment!

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4 Comments on ““Sweet are the thoughts that savour of content, The quiet mind is richer than a crown…””

  1. Bob Says:

    We humans are very adaptable animals. We can live in zero gravity in an orbiting space station for a pt least a year. Live underwater in submarines, live in artic igloos and even a Ghana school compound. Eventually we will colonize Mars and other places in the solar system. I won’t live to see it, but homo sapiens can do it and even adapt to living in the Martian gravity and flourish. Although having sex in low or zero gravity hasn’t been tried yet, eventually long trips to Mars will allow some future kids to call themselves Martians.

    Here it’s partly cloudy with temperatures in the low 70s. A beautiful spring day in North Texas including terrible pollen.

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      We are definitely adaptable. I would like to live underwater and in space, but nobody is offering. Manifest destiny was the belief that the US was destined to stretch from coast to coast which fed into our wanderlust.

      It stayed cloudy and on and off rainy all day, and was in the low 40’s, a nice temperature.

  2. olof1 Says:

    How fun, just as I read that You are watching The Mumy they show the new one with Brendan Frasier on tv here 🙂 I like both the old and the new ones.

    Cloudy and warm here today but the clouds were so thin that the sun mostly shone through rather well. The last time I looked at the thermometer it showed almost 52F. I found lots of flowers in bloom in my garden to my big surprise, They barely showed a few days ago 🙂

    Have a great day!

    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      It was wonderful watching The Mummy. I appreciated the props, the acting and the mood in the candlelit rooms. Boris Karloff is perfectly creepy.

      It stayed cloudy and damp all day, but it wasn’t as cold as the last few days were. It was in the low 40’s.

      Enjoy your evening!


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