Six Word Memoirs: PC Namibia Style

Maybe you’re familiar with the tale that Ernest Hemingway was once challenged to write a short story in only six words. If so, maybe you also recall that story to go as follows: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”

Many of you are probably familiar with the SMITH Magazine six word memoir project as well. Inspired by Hemingway, and the aforementioned project, the group 41 Peace Corps Namibia team set out to sum up our two years of service in just six words. They are as follows:

Oh wait. I forgot the disclaimer.
These words represent people, not governments.

Also, I will throw mine up top. Since you’re reading my blog I’ll assume you want to know what I wrote. I won’t name anyone else to protect their anonymity, but if any of my fellow volunteer bloggers want some credit, just ask.

Careers on hold, while lives unfold
Out I stand in deep sand
Village trees: progress rests beneath them
Like meme’s shitenge, it’s a wrap!

Finally starts just when it’s over
How can I steal this baby?
How can I summarize two years?
Tried twice. Second time went better.
The sand stripped away my indecision
Spoiler: the chickens never stop crowing
Love, touch, sand, music, heat, sunsets
Hoekom ek moet leer dit tal?
That damn rooster, every single morning.
Shell broken, voice loud, unapologetically me
Rugged mountains adored with seven hues
Diarrhea, I know I’m being witched!
Swakop! Working Wi-Fi and live music!
Ruins amidst a rust colored background
Rooster morning, sunny days, starry nights
/husa, au te re! find peace
Oh, fun! Another new country director.
Would Macedonia have been any better?
Pap, chakalaka, more pap and chakalaka
But I am not a doctor
Time, what a strange rubber band
Extend service? No, no way, maybe…
No windows? No seatbelts? No problem
It’s just another day in paradise
Ālabate ahora pollo, maňana te guisan
Six words could never be enough
Peace Corps changes who you are
Hopeful, broken, rebuilt, anew two years
It’s hard to surprise me now
Smile fades, hardened heart for survival
Did a thing! Time to nap
Namibian adventures opened a new mind
Though anxious, I’m fierce in service
Never knew what I was eating
I serve I slay I be
Desert glow, mountain sunset, rock oasis
Watching the sunsets and being mesmerized
We have nothing but beer today
Black coffee, oshikundu, green tea, tombo!
Complained constantly. Would do it again
Can you borrow me some money
Hot as hell. Sweet as sugar
Give me take and get out
All the kilometers, in their shoes.
Not a nurse. Helped deliver babies
Often choose to not wear shoes
Never forget to greet the elders
Confused? Greet, shake, smile and nod
I came, I saw, I served
All or nothing, nothing at all
Who I am, and am not
New depths of grief & joy
Electricity’s out, water’s out, typical day
It was a total shit show

Hope you enjoyed! Thanks for reading.

One response to “Six Word Memoirs: PC Namibia Style”

  1. virginia beards Avatar
    virginia beards

    Vivid and moving–whoever or whatever wrote this is terrific. It puts me there, succinctly.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: