Last month someone asked me if I had read the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency books. I of course replied in the negative, as my reading habits are somewhat limited to a certain genre of books.
My idea of a good book, is one that involves at least one Dragon, generally some Elves or Goblins, and a character that is large, like an ogre. They are set in mythical lands and usually involve the triumph of good over evil, with a bit of struggle in between. Titles generally include words like Saga or Dynasty or Chronicles or Legacy.
So, No 1 LDA didn't really sound like my cup of tea. But, oh how wrong I was. I love them. I'm on the third one now. Suffering badly with Kindle Shop Online Syndrome, I can't resist just pressing the button and buying the next book, as I finish the last page.
The books are great. They are set in Botswana. Which is not quite Burundi, but many things are very similar.
Sometimes at night when I sit with my two housemates, Mary (Kenyan) and Esther (Ugandan) I feel like I have drifted off and begun to live in one of the books. We sit and chat about life, men, marriage, work and the church. Drinking tea and eating bread and I'm there on Zebra Drive!
A recurring theme that arises in the books is that of the ants in Africa. They eat everything. Mma Ramotswe is often lammenting thet fact that the ants destroy all the evidence she needs. There is a string of tiny advent stocking hanging in a house not far from here, that remains 'sweetless' . I have heard a number of enquirers informed that this is not for lack of sweets in Burundi, but for the fact, that the only things who will get to eat the sweets will be the ants, not the children!
I had never realised that ants came in so many sizes until I moved here. There is an ant for every occasion, it seems. Tiny ones you can hardly see, up to great big ones that look like they could take a chunk out of your toe!
So it was with fascination that I took the two pictures below, of a squashed chip on the veranda. I was hoping to get a third picture.
But Deo, wouldn't let me keep the chip for another day, he cleaned it up! Even though in my best Kirundi I asked him not to! Well, I mimed sweeping up and said 'Oya, Oya.' Which means 'no, no'. But he just smiled and shook his head. I got the distinct impression that he thinks I'm a little soft in the head.
Day One: I think they are trying to move it!
Day 2: They gave up and just ate it.