Bertrand and I lost a good friend this week. It’s hit me pretty hard. I’m happy to far from the newspapers and the gossip and the speculation surrounding his passing, but not being able to fly back to Benin to be with family and friends has been more difficult than I expected.
I knew when we left for Freetown that flying home for funerals would be difficult. When my grandmother passed, I decided not to go. By the time I would have been able to get out of Freetown, I may or may not have been able to get to Virginia in time for the service. Coming so close and missing the ceremoney would have been more heartbreaking for me than mourning from here. So I didn’t go.
This time, we don’t know what the funeral plans are. Beninese Christian funeral customs are … well, for this outsider, they’re complicated at best, byzantine at worst. We don’t know all of the details, and perhaps we never will.
And of course, life goes on, even when you wish you could step back for a few minutes to appreciate the silence.