Understand That I am From Africa Not The Sun
Summer is once again upon us and like villagers whose hunter-gatherers have gone to fight and gather, we are welcoming it back with open arms. This winter was long, brutal and colder than relations between the USSR and the USA during the height of the Cold War. What made this winter particularly annoying was the fact that we barely enjoyed the fruits of a snowstorm.What is the purpose of snow and busting your ass on the ice, if school, classes and tests are not cancelled? There is literally no use for the dandruff that falls from the sky but let’s not go back to the dark times in this world.
Now that we are experiencing sun that actually warms you and air that suffocates you instead of maiming you, it would be best to cover one of my favorite questions as an African.
Me... an intellectual: Damn, why is it so hot? It's like America is being punished for something.
Individual: Isn't it hotter in Africa?
Me... a person with skin and feelings: Wow, it is really hot today.
Individual: Really? But you're from Africa, shouldn't you be used to it?
It would seem that most people think my fellow Africans and I live on the suns rays, and I don’t blame them. Toto blessed the rains down in ‘Africa,’ Bob Geldof and company didn’t think we knew it was Christmas because it was not snowing, and obviously all the coverage of starving people, drought-filled villages never feature any rain or snow or moisture which obviously means it is always hot.
I was going to explain that I was from Africa, not the Sun but honestly what fun is that. There are so many people in need of a laugh right now and so many people who have never interacted with Africans and they want to know. So this is the truth about the heat in Africa, what Africans don’t want to tell those who see snow because everyone will up and leave their countries to come and experience the joys of African heat.
It is hot.
I don’t think you’re getting me.
Not like the mild playful heat that you can bake cookies with, or has your car melting or even better have your feet getting stuck in the concrete. Oh no, no, African heat is deadly. It really is like living on the suns rays.
I remember when we were younger and it would get really hot, the kids in my class and I would take of our skins, and take this concoction from the local mganga* that made you a skeleton and we would go for a dip in the lake. I imagine it was quite a sight, seeing little skeletons splashing around. No wonder, the tourists would always faint before they could take any pictures to show the rest of the world. Which was probably for the best because it would have caused an international incident and they may have had to start a charity and they would need a song like ‘They need skin’ or ‘Do they know about the epidermis?’ People would have been dialling to 1-800-DERMIS just for kids in Africa who were taking off their skins and leaving their organs in bags of ice yet the witch doctors concoction wore off in an hour. It would have been an international scandal.
Unfortunately, things have cooled down over the years because of Global Warming. I wasn’t alive then but my mum says that when Toto blessed the rains in Africa, everything changed. Before there were no rains and after that, there were rainy seasons and people were able to at least recuperate from the months of heat. Africans are really grateful to the band for that because all they were trying to do was get the attention of a girl but they managed to save so many lives at the same time. In fact, the people of Africa are so grateful that they never play the song. It is so sacred, that once you play it, the rains just start falling. Miraculous. Someone should remake it for California because I hear there is a drought there.
There is no need to feel bad we have it pretty easy, wait until you go to North, West, and South Africa. We weep for them because it is just a different level of heat. If East and Central Africa are the sun’s rays, the rest of Africa is right in the middle of the sun. Plus we have the equator which gives us some pretty seasonable weather. No tropical storms, no harmattan winds, no snow… well now because of global warming we have been seeing snow. I’m going to need a group or coalition of international artists, obviously excluding Africans, to make a song to stop the snow because when else will we have the opportunity to bond with foreigners if they can no longer ask us ‘have you ever seen snow before?’
This world would truly be worse off.
While this problem seems to be endemic to only Westerners, Africans are guilty of thinking that if you somehow survived the abuse of winter, you should be able to handle the chill of a cold day in Africa. It’s as if we went to these Western snow-filled countries and came back with new nerves. I think that assumption is dangerous and rude because they all know our nerves were burned off when we used to live on the sun with them.