One of my favorite summer things in America: ROAD TRIP! I spent the last week driving from Utah to the Seattle area to visit with my cousins. Some first cousins. Some second cousins. Or they might be first cousins once removed. Maybe two third cousins? Some in-laws of cousins. Some old, dear friends of first cousins.
I'm designating Chris the biggest fan of my blog, because she emails me compliments after every post. And it's not just because we're related!
Chris and Jerry drove me all around in "The Boat," a big old Buick with many 1980's luxury features that they borrowed from Chris's parents for their stay. We went out to Hood Canal so I could meet Mike and Sandi (a second Sandi). I'm also calling Mike a fan of my blog, because he emails me almost as often as Chris does and because he gets a bit impatient waiting for the next post if I go more than a week in between. I'm not actually related to Mike and Sandi. They are old friends of Chris and Jerry.
They don't have good bacon in Tanzania. That "beef bacon" stuff is only one step above beef jerky. So I've been on a bit of a bacon frenzy since I came home.
If you want to see what Bill's been consuming for the past eight months, go to http://www.williamrugen.com/ , and click on "Consumed" at the bottom of the screen. I know, I think it's weird, too. But it made me laugh. And it made me go, "Hmmmm...." And it made me want to eat bacon. And while you're there, look at his other photos, too. So is Bill my second-cousin-in-law? Or maybe my first-cousin-once-and-a-half-removed?
There's a Swahili word, ndugu, that we should import to America. My Living Language study guide defines it as "sibling." When I asked Mr. Solomon, my Swahili teacher, about it, he told me it's much more inclusive than that. The "Swahili Practical Dictionary" defines it as 1) brother, sister, 2) cousin, 3) relative, and 4) comrade. That's nice. It's very reflective of the Tanzanian practice of considering all degrees of cousins and old friends to be just "cousins," or even brothers and sisters. I can call everyone I visited this week my ndugu. So no worries about whether the in-laws count as cousins and I can count Mike and Sandi, too, and I don't have to figure out how to count degrees of cousin-ness away from Chris. The fifth definition for ndugu is "incurable." So Bill's in there, too, one way or another!