Hello again! Life here in Africa has been beyond incredible! Between helping out at the clinic, and hanging out with the local school kids, I have stayed quite busy! Today, I will enlighten you with a short story about an interaction I had with one of our patients the other day.
This was an unusual day at the clinic in the fact that we had several mothers waiting for vaccinations for their babies and we had run out vaccines. Nashipai, one of the clinic nurses, went to pick up more and since I had just finished lunch I went to socialize with the patients. As I walked into the clinic, this young man introduced himself and Immediately asked me if I cooked lunch and more importantly, if I knew how to cook. I told him that I helped with lunch and that I actually do know how to cook! As soon as I said that, he invited me to sit down next to him and proposed quite an interesting arrangement.
He told me that I should marry his brother! He explained to me that his family would pay my family with cows and that we would be very happy together. He then asked me a series of questions consisting of where I am from, if I have an education, and how far have I been educated. I answered his questions and he took a moment of silence to calculate how much I am worth in cows. To give you a small background, I was talking to a local Maasai women a few weeks ago and I asked her about wedding customs and she told me that the groom’s family will give the bride’s family cows as a payment for the bride. She informed me that the minimal amount a family would offer would be six cows, and the maximum amount reaching twenty cows. So to continue with my story, here I am, waiting for the calculation to be completed to see what he was going to offer me on the behalf of his brother. (Don’t worry Brendon, I was never going to agree no matter how many cows he offered my mom and dad!)
After factoring in that I could cook for his brother, I was from another country, AND I have a college education he offered me 20 cows! He told me that he would bring his brother to meet me and we could get married! Now this is where I told him that I was already engaged to someone and that I couldn’t marry his brother. He looked slightly disappointed but then immediately asked if Brendon was a Doctor. When I told him he was going to be a Phyical Therapist he tried to look happy for me! 🙂 By this time, the immunizations had arrived and his cute little baby was taken care of. As he said goodbye, he insisted that he would bring his brother to meet me and instructed that I not marry anyone else before that! The interactions I’ve had in Africa have definitely been incredible, interesting and entertaining. 🙂
P.S. I did not accept the offer nor any cows. It’s not hard to find a herd of cows to take pictures with around here!