Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Africa True and False

So my sister doesn’t read my blog. I know this because after the incident with the screaming headline article, she took to complaining about my Africa trip.

“I didn’t know your clothes were shredded by lions, Sister!” she exclaimed “How is it that I have to read in the paper that your clothes were shredded by lions?”

Now, I am sure I told her all about Africa—about the bossy team leader who inspired my “Paige” character in my YA novel Drink the Rain, about the sleepless nights, the lack of food, and most certainly the lions. It’s all posted on the book’s myspace page, not to mention the publisher’s website. The journalist at the Press Enterprise had no problem finding out. But no. My sister says, “We just don’t know much about what happened in Africa. Nanee and I say it all the time. Just what we read in the book—and who knows what of that is real.”

So here I am, the night before this major book tour, and I’m reorganizing the Africa pictures into this tiny photo album because I’m going on the train and there’s a weight and size limit for the baggage. I’m not even packed, but I’m sitting there, dutifully filing photos into the album for over an hour. Then I have pull my lion-shredded sweatshirt out of storage and find room for that in my baggage—all this at the expense of my black journalism portfolio that I had to leave behind. It wouldn’t fit.

I write this to you from the train. I will post pictures from the road provided I make it. We just passed an unsettling pile of wrecked railway cars on the right hand side of the tracks. Hopefully, my sister will read about this here after my safe arrival, but if I don’t make it, I'm sure the Press Enterprise will dig up the info and print it alongside AUTHOR DERAILS, FAILS TO TALK AT THE THOMAS BEAVER LIBRARY.

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