Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Educators’ Insights on Culture Shock, Identity and Pedagogy
Interplay 4: And a Good Time Was Had by All
And a Good Time Was Had by All
He liked parades with floats full of Miss Americas and Miss Daytona Beaches and Miss Queen Cotton Products. He didn’t have any use for processions and a procession full of school teachers was about as deadly as the River Styx to his way of thinking.
Flannery O’Connor (1995) from A Late Encounter with the Enemy
The best time to be in a small African village was during the celebrations and gatherings that came just in the nick of time to save us from absolute boredom. Luckily, Cameroonians know how to have a good time. They have a genuine interest in people, they love dancing to wild, throbbing music, they have an interesting sense of fashion (I saw one guy wearing pants made out of green shag carpeting), they have no earthly idea what time it is so the party may just go on forever, and they have a natural flair for the dramatic. Whether it was a religious holiday, a tribal meeting or ritual, or a school function, it was a chance for everyone to come together to break the daily monotony of small village life and give us something to talk about for the next few weeks, until something else happened to divert our attention.
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