I think I’m ready to talk about it

I got a puppy. His name is Sufjan, after both Sufjan Stevens and my Dagbani teacher here. He is sandy brown with dark eyes. As all 4 month old puppies are, he is overly zealous about life. I would show you pictures but I deleted them hours after he was killed by a motorcycle. I had never seen anything die before that day.

Sufjan left me scarred. Literally, I had scratches and little doggy bites from head to toe for weeks after he had died. After asking everyone who would listen to find me a puppy for weeks, finally one of the preteens I have met found me one. He was too old to adopt, he was already accustomed to the family that had been taking care of him his whole life. They didn’t care, they got 5 dollars from me (Ghanaians don’t get very attached to their pets). I developed post-pardon depression immediately after bringing him home. He was inconsolable for days, which gave me an anxiety that I have never experienced before. 

Sufjan cried and cried, and so I spent every minute with him just to calm him down. He whimpered all night until about 4 when I would finally bring him inside to sleep with me. Just as we started becoming undeniably attached to each other a friend untied him and let him roam for the first time. That was that. Note to self, living by the roadside + puppy = yea, not a good idea.

The village women told me the accident was meant for me. Ghanaians are a very superstitious people. So am I. Five dollars for my life. Sufjan is my savior, may he rest in peace. But now I can’t cross the street without wondering when fate will catch up with me.

Abukari’s cat had kittens. I told him what I told every one who has been offering me a new pet: Nope. I kill pets. I don’t mean to, but it happens. Then I started hearing mice at night and realized its time for a cat. I’ll just keep one in the kitchen, no getting attached. He will eat my leftovers and my mice and that’s that. I made a deal with the Fulani to bring me cow milk every morning and a few weeks after the litter was born I brought one home. And fell head over heels in love. Oops. I haven’t felt this way since jumior high. His name is Pedro and he is flawless. He is the perfect little guy to come home to after a long day of struggling to explain in Dagbani to the women that they can’t have my clothes. They are mine and I would like to wear them. And I can’t buy them all oranges at market, I don’t make any money. And I’m not going to buy you sodas because it was my birthday, you are confused. You are supposed to get me something, you see, because it is my birthday.

Oh, kittens make life so much better. Who knew? And they also have nine lives, don’t they?


oh Maria.. I am sorry that Sufjan died.. oh Maria..

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