Monday, July 25, 2011

Our Nigerian Visitor

Sorry that I have not blogged for a while - I was on vacation and it was fun. A Nigerian friend, Philip, stayed with us and this was his first visit to the U.S. We tried to take him around a lot of places so he could see what Maine is like. It made a great vacation for me because my husband was off last week and we visited a lot of spots that we had not seen for a number of years. It was great to see Philip's reactions to things that he had not experienced before.

There is a beautiful spot along the Maine coast that has the Pemaquid Lighthouse. Buzz, Philip, and I loved walking on the ledges and now the lighthouse is open, so we climbed the stairs to the top. It was a great view - fairly clear that day and we could see for miles. Philip says that they don't have lighthouses in Nigeria, so it was a great experience for him. He also enjoyed himself when we took him to the Maine Wildlife Park in Gray, Maine. It is for animals that cannot live in the wild because of injury or people trying to make them into pets. I have seen moose before, but never got as close to the ones in the enclosures.

It was a hoot thinking up food for Philip to try. I made Whoopie Pies, a Maine treat, which he loved. He also liked Moxie, Salt and Vinegar Potato Chips, and lobster. Oh yes, we cooked out at Reid State Park and Sebago State Park so that we had coals to roast marshmallows and make S'mores, which he liked. When we took him out to eat, he found the choices almost overwhelming. I agree with him - we Americans are given a huge amount of choices. Just think of how many kinds of products you encounter when shopping at a grocery store, for example. Or if you go into Dunkin Donuts and order coffee, there are many ways you can have it - hot or iced, decaf or regular, flavor shots, etc.

Even appliances like our refrigerator, (a modest size by American standards) washer, dryer, dishwasher, and so forth are things that we take for granted. We have reliable electricity,fast internet, lots of movies available on Netflix, and many choices of television channels.

Philip came to visit bearing some lovely gifts. He gave us two statuettes of men, hand carved from ebony wood. He gave me two handmade bracelets also made from ebony and brought us some Fela Kuti CDs, with his Afrobeat type of music. Philip even told us what some of the songs were about, because when Fela is singing, I cannot make out all of the words.

It was a fun, interesting visit and I learned so much. I have always wanted to visit Nigeria, and now I am even more determined to make it happen. It would be wonderful if everyone in America could have a foreign visitor for a few weeks, it would really teach us more about other places in the world, but also teach us more about ourselves.

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