Getting to Day 5 with the Bony Dog
Luck seems to be a matter of working with reality instead of against it
The big bony dog next door sleeps in a raised cage during the day, often sprawled on his back with his legs splayed open, balls flopping in the heat. I think he begins barking at night when it’s his time to be let out and guard the place. He doesn’t seem unhappy. As Ghanaian dogs go, I think he’s got it pretty good.
On Saturday, there was a loose idea that someone would take me on a visit to a couple of the Oxford Houses here — a type of halfway house for people in recovery. But they didn’t appear, and I didn’t pursue it. I felt lethargic and let the day fritter away. I went for two walks, to see what the neighborhood was like. I finally heard calls of “Oborɔnyi!” from some of the kids. One girl calls my name, and I realize she was one of the students from the school I visited the day before.
Saturday evening I feel completely crummy. I have a mild case of the common complaint described here as, “I am running,” and some nausea. It’s familiar, I’m not worried about it. But in the night, I develop a fever and, weirdly, an aching in my bones, particularly my shins, that raises my anxiety a notch. I have fever dreams, waking up always with fleeting images of twos. Two staircases, two women, two loaves of bread, two vague something-or-other, like some demented Noah’s Ark.
On Sunday I tell Joe, the staff member who handles all sorts of hospitality needs, that I will stay in my room for the day. I feel a little guilty; I’m supposed to go to church with Father, but I just don’t feel up to it. I wonder if I am malingering just to avoid church.
The fever never gets terribly high and breaks early Sunday evening. I start feeling better. Then Monday morning, I wake up with a runny nose. Now I’m getting really suspicious, but self-will kicks in right away. I feel better, so maybe I just continue as if nothing is wrong and ignore the nagging in my brain. I don’t want to miss the festival in Kabile. I don’t want to miss going to Kabile entirely, either. I don’t want to change my plans. I don’t want to think about it. If I can just gloss over a little of this, and tell a little (white?) lie…