The Foosball Fraternity (#3)

Last night I went back into the Epworth township around sunset.  Got some nice shots of the place and of course stopped off to play foosball with the local gang.  I ended up staying until well after dark which I normally wouldn't do if I were alone, but with all the new friends I've made playing foosball (and buying them beer) I felt safe.  I think of it as my own personal foosball security unit....nobody messes with me or touches my car.  It's crazy to think that if I walked off on my own, just 100 steps into the tantalizingly dark unknown beyond the shops where township begins, my situation would change abruptly. The funny part is, being that I'm accepted on the foosball tables (fortunately I can play), accepted for being generous and treating everyone to drinks, and accepted for the shear craziness of being white and driving in to a poor township AT NIGHT just to play foosball, I'm actually accepted as being one of the guys.  Not just in the eyes of those I play with, but with the masses of people walking by.  If your with them, you are one of matter your color.  For that I feel safe.  Foosball is my ticket in, my means of integrating within the townships.

At least that's what I keep telling myself.

Towards the end of my trip is when I find myself reflecting most on the contrast between life here and life in the States.  For all the time spent trying to give, share, and contribute in some small way, I usually leave here feeling that I am the one who has been given so much. Why is it that we are so enticed by the modern world and yet so enriched by the simplicity and commonality of the basic human condition?  How refreshing is it to meet people who smile and light you up with glowing warmth when you greet them.  The simplicity here is so rewarding and cleansing.  Unfortunately, with every amazing aspect that exists in the life and culture here, there is a sobering oppressive reality of living poor.  One thing that I have observed in the 13 years of coming here is that there is seemingly no moderation - it's either either incredible or devastating.  Too much rain or no rain at all.


Saturday, May 20, 2006

Zim Life - The Foosball Fraternity
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