Sunday, July 4, 2010

It's Been a While (Again)

It's time I come clean and admit it. I am the world's worst blog writer. I'm able to access the internet very nearly 24/7, but I hardly ever manage to update this blog. I apologise. I'd say I'll change, but I probably won't.

Since it's been such a long time, of course I have tons to share. What do you want first: bad news or good news?

Bad news it is!

On November 19th, 2009, I stayed home from school. I wasn't feeling well, but I certainly wasn't sick. I was dealing with an awkward situation in my village, my first puppy had just died under mysterious circumstances and it was the very beginning of my first holiday in a different, and uncomfortably warmer, hemisphere. There was a knock on my door. I opened it, and there was Kagiso, a friend of my host family who, weeks before, had promised to bring me a new puppy. In his arms, there was a tiny, squirming white bundle of adorable puppyness. It was Rusty, my new dog. Rustenburg went from shy, little puppy to ferocious goat herder over the next several months. He followed me everywhere, to the shops, on runs. He waited for taxis with me. He even traveled on taxis with me. He survived puppydom and grew close to full-size. I thought for sure that Rusty would live to adulthood, to a long trip back to America, to meet his American family (Polar and Bi). He did not. While I was at a workshop outside Pretoria, my host family called to let me know that my best friend was found dead. I'm still not sure exactly what happened, but I no longer have a dog scratching at my door to be let in or jumping on my bed to be let out. Rustenburg is gone.

In typical fashion, the people here tell me not to worry, they'll get me a new dog. The concept that pets are not interchangeable is entirely foreign. I can only imagine what the Kuruman vet would think if I brought a third puppy in for a check-up.

To cope with some of my grief, I've been baking. I have orange-chocolate cupcakes in the oven now. They're delicious, but of course, I'd rather have my dog.

Now for the good news: vacation!

I went on an epic roadtrip a couple weeks ago. We saw... Too much for just one post. I'll get back to this later, maybe when my fingers have degreased from all the cupcakes I've been handling.

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