Sunday, April 3, 2011

"Old Man, my father" other endearments from the market

One thing that cannot be escaped on this sabbatical trip is age. In almost every situation someone will remind me that I am no longer a youngster as they address me as "Old man." Turns out that no matter what my gut says to me about that epitaph, it is generally a term of respect. When I was 22 and my Marines called me the "Old Man" that was a proud feeling but it is not the feeling that I am getting at my current age as Kenyans wanting my attention call out "Old man." It is sort of the same idea as when guys in the Hartsville YMCA tell me they hope they are still working when they become MY AGE. Now, I have my own story like that: This morning though there was a woman in the breakfast room who has some years on me. She (80 and proud of it) is visiting Kenya with her son, a doctor, and they are heading out to Eldoret where he practiced medicine for a year more than ten years ago. I hope when I get her age I still have the desire to quench a thirst for adventure -- maybe then I will not mind being called "Old Man." This Coker professor is learning a lot of lessons on this sabbatical trip.

Sabbatical Trip (2011 - April 3)


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