Monday, March 16, 2009

American Girls Abroad

Incredibly sad story about a Peace Corps worker who was killed in the African country of Benin last week. They have a suspect and the woman's parents don't believe the murder was political or random. Opening the possibility that the victim knew her assailant. I came to this conclusion because I spent a summer relentlessly viewing CBS's shitty show Cold Case. In tandem with 48 Hours. Which devoted a program to a Peace Corps murder many years ago committed by a fellow volunteer (Snapped was the triumvirate in my crime tv phase) Justice was not swift in that case. I hope that Kate Puzey's murderer is caught quickly and punished to the full extent of the law.

My travels abroad were not remotely altruistic in nature. And a week long vacation at a Tunisian resort isn't comparable to teaching English in sub saharan Africa. But this young women's death made me reflect on my life as a student in Europe.

Late night strolls thru majestic piazzas smoking hash with strangers. Precariously perched on bar stools across the continent, guzzling drinks of unknown origin. I used to joke that my fellow Americans were a ATM /mattress combo but fortunately we all made it home alive. Though the less fortunate came home having to finish a course of antibiotics.

My young daughter is already fascinated by Paris. More than a decade away, I'm preparing myself to see her off to some shabby apartment in which she'll have her very own American girl abroad adventures.

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