The big question from everyone lately — colleagues, volunteers at work, visitors to the museum — is “how are you planning on spending your Fourth of July long weekend?” Well, my week included 14 hour workday Thursday, a mad dash of museum goers Friday (my site was the only open place for people to go in the city apparently), and then a stressful drive to see fireworks for twenty minutes last night. For some rest and recuperation after all that, I made the decision to spend the day at home reading Chimamanda Ngowzi Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun. (Which I’m enjoying as much as I did Americanah.)
As first, I really thought that was a lame idea. Ugh, you’re forgoing cookouts and drinking beer and fireworks with friends to stay at home reading about the Nigerian civil war?! And then it hit me that there are so many people in the world — especially women — who are denied the right to own their own homes or to have educations or even decide how they’ll spend their days and I’m so ridiculously lucky to be able to do and have all of those things. This country may not be perfect, but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate all of the opportunities and liberties that it has afforded me as a citizen.