Lions And Water And Buffalo, Oh My!

, , , , | Right | September 2, 2018

(I have just returned from a year teaching at a school in Africa. I am about to move cross-country, but I am working at my old job for a few weeks before the move. For some reason, when my name tag printed, it added, “New to the family,” underneath my name. This has led to a few questions, but this conversation tops them all. It will be important to note that the woman in question is British.)

Woman: “Your tag says, ‘New to the family.’ How long have you been here?”

Me: “Well, I worked here for a year, but then I got a chance to teach in Africa for a year, so now I’m back for a bit.”

Woman: “Oh, Africa! Cool! Was it annoying to not have running water?”

Me: *not realizing exactly where this is going at first* “Well, we had running water most of the time. But it would go out about once a week, and that was pretty annoying.”

Woman: “I see. What about lions? Was it scary to have them walking down the street all the time?”

Me: *finally realizing what she’s thinking* “Well, even in the villages, lions tend to be smart enough to stay away from the villages of people who team up with weapons. But I was in the city, so we really didn’t have to worry about that.”

Woman: “Oh, let me enjoy my fantasy. You know, when I moved to America, I went to Montana first, because I wanted to pet some of the buffalo roaming down the street.”

Me: *somewhat startled* “Ma’am, petting a wild buffalo is about as dangerous as petting a wild lion!”

Woman: “Oh, whatever. I was so disappointed to realize that buffalo don’t just roam around in Montana. Just let me enjoy my fantasy about the lions in Africa!”

(“There are none so blind as those who will not see,” I suppose. After I got over being so startled, it was pretty funny. But it took me a bit to stop shaking my head at her wilful ignorance.)

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