Nouadhibou, Mauritania

  • Date
  • 12 April 2000

After taking the military convoy into Mauritania, we were required to register our car with the police. Jim went into the office to do this while I sat outside on the ground with local children swarming around me. One little girl, who looked to be about four years old and to have never brushed her teeth, carried a baby on her hip like a young mother would. All the children were barefoot. They asked over and over again in French for a gift. They sat extremely close to me just looking and sometimes touching. I’m learning that what I would term poverty is a way of living for others. I can want better for them, but I cannot pity them. This is life.