Moshi, you're stunning.
I can't believe I'm almost on my way back to Nashville. It seems like I just got here.
When I'm gone, I like to fill my family's inbox with long ass emails. This was the first one:
On Aug 17, 2018, at 8:03 AM, Kate Moore <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Hello family ❤️
If you’re reading this, that means that I landed somewhere (hopefully Addis Ababa) and got connected to wifi. Or it means I’m near one of those poles at the Moshi airport waiting for Shabani to pick me up...
This flight to Ethiopia is one of the most beautiful spaces ever. There are people of all ages here - I think our smallest is less than 4 weeks and she’s an angel. And I believe there’s an 80 year old woman sitting near me with the most beautiful head scarf I’ve ever seen. There’s a mother up front with 2 boys - 7 years, and 19 months - and a little girl - 8 months or so... I just walked by and all 4 of them were sleeping, finally. There’s another young boy with his mom up front too - it’s his first time to Ethiopia and he’s coming to meet his grandparents for the first time! Another 9 year old told me that he’s really scared about where he’s going because there’s no technology! GASP!
After I did that teacher training last weekend in Asheville, we talked a lot about re-wilding our kids. Dad, I told them all about how you used to take me and Finnee to the meadows and how beautiful it was to watch Finnee run. We talked about how there’s so much screen time these days - so I just started leaving my phone at home during that training and i didn’t even know how good for my heart that would be. So when I was in the Toronto airport earlier with an hour and a half delay, I remembered to put my phone down only to look around and see every single person in there on some kind of screen - there were a bunch of iPads set up all over the place where you could play games too. Heaven forbid we get bored and have to get creative. There was a lady near me about to start reading Mark Manson’s book “The Subtle Art of not Giving a Fuck.” From a few seats away she said hello to me, I scooched a few seats closer. And we talked to each other for the next two hours. Mom and Jim, Marta’s from Bogotá. She studied languages in England for 3 years, Germany for one, and France for another. She met her British husband Paul while he was on a trip to Colombia 35 years ago - now they have three daughters 27, 29, and 33 and a son who has autism. They live in British Colombia. Isn’t that funny (he’s British... she’s Colombian...)? When her son was young, the doctors said that eventually he would have to be sent to an institution because he would likely harm himself or be too difficult. After hearing that, Marta dedicated herself to working with him so that they could better understand each other - he’s got a girlfriend now and she’s very very proud of him. She said that it probably helped her understand him because she had always lived in places where people couldn’t understand her either. She doesn’t like the F word and I told her my mother feels the same way... but her daughter gave her the book so she’s determined to get through it. Her husband is honest, trust worthy, and firm about making sure he and Marta have quality time together without their kids.
It’s 10:55pm cst as I’m writing but I literally just watched the sun come up from a dark sky and now the whole sky is lit up like its daytime. Which I guess, here, it is! It started with the whole sky line as a sliver of bright bright orange. Next the yellow and reds came. Then the blues, greens, purples.. then pink. You could see the complete outline of the sun. If you’d have blinked, you would have missed it. It’s incredible that that happens every day really.
Flights are so funny because everyone’s internal clocks are so... for lack of a better word... fucked up. Also... I’m not lacking a better word! I’m choosing “fucked up” because it paints such a clear picture for that weird sleepy chaos and discomfort that you feel when you’ve been bound to a seat for 12 hours in a tiny vessel full of strangers that’s flying through the air over continents and oceans. And even though there’s discomfort, too bad. Be humble, sit down. We’re all in this together, you know? They just fed us an omelette with rosemary potatoes and that feels like a weird thing to eat at 11pm but it’s bright outside and I’ve been sleeping so. Ok.
I’m reading two books right now - White Fragility by Robin Diangelo and In The Shadow of Statues by the (former?) Mayor of New Orleans Mitch Landrieu after Ruby sent me Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday interview with him - makes me feel so clear that those statues in Richmond have got to go. It’s not about erasing history, it’s about making a historical apology for the generations of damage that these particular men fought for. They were on the wrong side of humanity. He talks about wanting to be on the right side of history and humanity and how that can be hard - but doing what’s right is more important than avoiding a challenge. And tying all of that in with White Fragility, black lives are more important than white feelings... so it’s time I start putting my individual discomforts aside and talk about this stuff, knowing that a lot of times I’m going to mess up, and hear each other and use this white privilege for some good!
You know, just some casual airplane reading.
Those are my updates of the evening. I love you all and I appreciate the way you support me in this wild and driven life I seem to lead.