samedi 30 août 2008

Stealing from the Poor

In rural Africa, homelessness is a realtive term. Buildings are little more than enclosures that keep some of the wind, dirt, and rain out of your face. People don't really live in their houses and are likely to sleep anywhere. In every village however, there are les fous or people with mental illnesses who are family exiles and their care becomes the responsibility of the neighborhood. Neighbors make sure they get some food, enough clothingm, an occasional handout etc. There are 4 fous in Tougouri.

I bring this up because I recently found out that i've been stealing from my fous. I told some of you about how I find money on the ground and will ask around, "hey, is that yours? No" Nobody ever claims money found on the ground. I always thought this was kinda strange in a country so poor. Anyways, if no one would claim the money I'd pick it up for myself. Well . . . I was talking about this to another volunteer who informed me that Burkinabe never pick up fallen money because it's God's way of giving income to les fous. Like manna from heaven.

So shameful!! I've been stealing from the poor and needy. I have stopped picking up fallen money and reformed my ways.

3 commentaires:

Sue a dit…

Wow, even I knew that the money on the ground was for les fous. Don't you read? What did Milsaps teach you?
Is it weird that you're sitting in an internet cafe in Owagadu (I know I spelled that wrong) and I'm sitting in a computer classroom in the middle of rural Tennessee? There is no limit to the weird situations that you being a peace corps volunteer has presented.

hhedges4 a dit…

We would all do well to follow the example of the Burkinabe

Jessica a dit…

I'm glad that people don't just leave money lying around on the ground in the place where I work. There would be riots. This one lady tried to bring some leftover pizzas the other day and her car was mobbed by homeless people in the parking lot. Just another difference between Africa and Nashville, I guess...