Sunday, July 19, 2009

Blogger finally finds voice (only it's not his)

Today's Washington Post features a fantastic article by William Powers, who writes of traveling the whole of Liberia by bush-taxi, motorbike, and foot. Powers offers a brief glimpse into the history of this unique Sub-Saharan African country, comments on its under-appreciated ties to the U.S., and shares a unique insider's view into its language, culture, food, and people. Here's a snippet:
"Welcome to Liberia!" the immigration officer exclaimed.
"How da'body?" I replied.
"Body fine!" he answered, reaching out to shake my hand. I was ready. I knew the ubiquitous Liberian snap-shake: After a regular handclasp, each person uses the other's middle finger to snap his own. The result is a satisfying double-pop. But I'd been out of Liberia too long. My snap-shake wouldn't snap. The officer shrugged. "Keep tryin,'" he said.

Photo credit: Christopher Herwig

It's a fun, well-written article that may have been pulled from Powers' memoir, Blue clay people: Seasons on Africa's fragile edge. It certainly makes one want to go visit and experience the country for oneself. It also inspires one to become a better writer. See for yourself.

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