The sound of spontaneous African laughter caught up and drifting over to where I sat. On the expansive veranda of the Bishop's home in Ghana. Where the heady air licked my face and clung tightly like a warm hug, to my skin. I would peer round and think of them downstairs, yearning to join the warm conversation taking place between the three women who worked the kitchen. And little Emmanuela who lay warm in her crib, tossling about while they talked loudly. Little Emmanuela who stared up at me so lovingly, not expecting to see a white face at only 9 months old. Little Emmanuela who loved to cling to me, and when I asked to hold her - they loved to watch me fumble and seem so insecure about holding a baby and finally tieing her on my back, just like an African mama. So I held her on my aching back but not wanting to let her go - and suddenly everyone was taking photo's even the passers-by in the road below, all pointing at this "ebroni" holding a black baby on her back. How I wished I could walk through the crowds on to the street and let them see, how much we all the same, all of us, no matter the colour difference.
Then when Emmanuela lay down to sleep, their laughter settled until noon the next day. When it drifted through the air, calling to me. Until finally, I pulled the netted gate open and walked in. They asked if there was something I needed. No I replied and then just stood there. How could I tell them I just wanted to be among them, even though I could not understand their mother tongue, I just wanted to be among the mothers of Africa, where I am one of them. I just longed to look at them and hear their stories, see the lines on their faces and watch them bare footed in the kitchen, making that "FuFu."
Oh Ghana, how I miss you. I found more of me within you then I had elsewhere, only God knew. Ghana, it seemed strange as fear rose up within me when I heard you call my name across the African plains. But when I reached your wounded arms, the scars held me and let me heal my own.
Ghana, how I long for you, still today you smell like home. Ghana, how I pray for you and say "God bless you, beloved people of God - God bless you!" May the sound of your laughter never cease as it drifts across my wall and caresses me with Mother's arms, tightly and eternally...
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