I have been writing Marking 10 Years in Liberia in my head for at least 3 months now. I want to mark this occasion by writing about it because I feel I need to take stock, look back, and, see where I am going.
When you tell someone you have spent 10 years in Liberia, you get all sorts of reactions and faces: "Wow," "Really?" "Why?" accompanied by raised eyebrows, concerned faces and puzzlement. Clearly, Liberia is not a place where you are supposed to have spent a decade in.
I'm going to mark 10 years in Liberia by writing a quasi memoir of sorts.
Question is: what is it going to be about?
My journey as a woman? The story of how I traded aid for trade? The story of how my boyfriend was murdered by Chinese criminals? The story of how I decided to take over his company, met the man of my life and, created a second life? My struggle to understand and appreciate Liberia? The story of how I have shed multiple layers of identity and, added some new ones? The story of how I struggled to make a life in the world's poorest country? Is this the story of a Pakistani woman?
I could just tell the story from the start and, tell it in a long narrative. It'll be nice to relate the last 10 years.
But, I think what I really want to write about is what was it like to live and work here for the last decade. What was it like working for the UN in Liberia? What was it like to experience a loved one getting murdered here and, having to deal with the aftermath? What is it like running a business here? And, most importantly, what is day to day life like in sweet Liberia?
So, having 'thunk' a little bit about it, I'm going to start writing my quasi memoir.