I have been astoundingly busy recently and haven't had/taken the time to write up blog entries. I apologize.
The last post I submitted was an article that I wrote for the magazine 'Farm to Market' produced by the business and natural resources programs of Peace Corps volunteers in Togo. It was in French.
I've been writing a lot in French recently. In order to fill out my blog a bit I'm going to post up the three articles on NGO development I recently wrote for the workshop that my friend I and I just held in Tsevie. I hope that these articles might be useful for people working in West Africa with NGOs. Just make sure to credit me and link back to my blog.
In other news, my cat Odysseus died last night. I don't know why. When I arrived home from a day of celebrations for International Worker's Day, I found him curled up in his litter tray, too weak to even stand. I searched him for injuries or wounds and didn't find anything. I held him and made him comfortable, then I called my counterpart and asked her to contact her uncle the veterinarian. About an hour later, Ody stopped breathing and died quietly in my lap.
My counterpart came over with her children, who have been my cat-sitters for the past year and a half. They woke my landlord and the local pastor and together we dug a hole by lantern-light and buried Ody in the field behind the house with the waning moon shining brightly above us. The pastor explained that often animals will take the unhappiness or curse directed at their human/owner and thus sacrifice themselves. He said a prayer that I would accept this sacrifice gratefully and stop crying (Togolese people believe that crying makes a person weak and they are always very worried for me when I cry.)
I'm very sad to have lost Ody, but I am glad that I was there to be with him; it would have been much worse if he had been, for example, stolen and eaten like my chicken was. It's pretty sad putting away all the little food and collars that my mom sent to me, knowing that he won't need them.