18 September 2008
18 September 2008
I haven’t had writer’s cramp in ages. I mean, a bit of tendonitis and aching wrists from typing, but that ache down the back of my right hand, particularly intense in the joints of my index fingers, and creating grooves in the fleshy pads of my fingers? It’s been years since I felt that.
I remember feeling that it was outdated and cruel that they made us do long essay exams by hand in college – so few of us were used to writing by hand, we were obviously in serious danger of being at a disadvantage due to simple fatigue.
But here I am now, straining my eyes writing in three or four different notebooks a night, by hand aching, my throat itching from kerosene smoke, my legs going numb from dangling over the edge of a chair which is approximately one inch too short to allow me to have proper posture. I have a book of song lyrics – listening to my mp3 player and writing down lyrics to songs I’d like to memorize so when I get back to the states I can make lots of money as a lounge singer. I have this ‘blog book’ that I’ve been neglecting a bit lately. I have a notebook for a Site Journal where I’m trying to talk about the village, my prospects for work, and the people with whom I’m living and working.
I’m also working on a bit of fiction – kind of a ‘fanfic’ piece based in the ‘Buffy universe’. We’ll see what comes of that, for the moment it’s a nice diversion, and I’m discovering my proclivity toward character development in lieu of plot (I try not to worry about the parallels to my own life)
I have another notebook where I’m trying to keep track of finances. I’m at a bit of a crunch right now as I had to spend a bunch to get set up – bed, mattress, stove, food, kerosene lamp, candles, etc. and I had to give an un-anticipated advance on my rent. The situation will all be sorted once my quarterly living expenses are deposited 1 October. In the meantime, all of my things are in vaguely arranged piles on the floor* and I’m counting up my change to make sure I can afford the taxi to Lome and the bank.
*This creates a really chaotic system of disorganization that frequently reduces me to fierce gutteral mutterings especially when compounded by the insufficient light from my sputtering candle and the sweat dripping off my nose. And then I take a deep breath and move on.
Current reading: Naked by David Sedaris
Wise words from the BBC Network Africa for 19 Sept: He who does not know that he does not know, does not know.