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4of21 Danyal Amara
Date N/A
Internal Name 4of21
Internal Series  Brains, #4 

Danyal Amara

Age 6: "That village woman screams every time she sees me. She says I'm cursed, that I don't have a guardian spirit to protect me - that when I die I'll be doomed to the desert..."

Age 7: "Kigelia for bee-stings, ginger root for upset stomach, Devil's Claw for back pain, caju bark for fever... What was the cure for cough again? Oh yes, warburgia!"

Age 8: "What is this strange pain in my arm? It hurts so bad!"

Age 9: "Baba's home from America! I wonder what he's brought me?"

Age 10: "My Mama takes care of so many people. When I grow up, I will do the same and make her proud."

Age 10: "It was just a routine circumcision, and they sacrificed a cow. It was awful, the thing bleated and cried and bled out for ages..."

Age 12: "Passing through the slums always scares me. I hate seeing so many people suffer."

Age 12: "I love it when our visits coincide with Sukuma dance season! Last year they used live snakes during the festival! I wonder what it will be this time?"

Age 14: "There was nothing we could do for her. It was so sad. To see this little baby suffering so much, and know she's going to die. The mother didn't say a word the whole time we were there. I won't sleep tonight."

Age 15: "A rare treat - for my birthday my friends and I are going to the movies! It will be good to get my mind off things and unwind a bit."

Age 17: "The flare ups are almost completely gone now - but what if they get worse when I am in America? I won't know what to do without Mother's help."

Age 18: "How much longer do I have to sit on this plane for? It feels like we've been flying forever. Such a horrible feeling, knowing home is so far away."

Age 18: "Fengie Bashar. The name of the girl I'm going to marry is Fengie Bashar. This picture mother gave me is just lovely. She smiles well - she has very pretty teeth."

Age 19: "I've never seen so much food wasted in my whole life! Does no one in this country appreciate what it is like to be hungry?"

Age 20: "I can't sleep. The exam is tomorrow and I can't sleep. What if I fail? I can't return to Dar a failure - I can't meet Fengie as a failure."

Age 21: "I wonder if I can put in a request to residence for a new roommate? Alex had his music blaring all night. How am I supposed to study like this?"

Age 22: "My roommate failed this semester. Some people come from around the world to study here and yet he wastes all his time chasing girls. I'm glad I have Fengie so I can focus on my studies."

Age 24: "I hope Father can wire me some money for a new winter coat. I knew it would be cold here, but this winter has been insane!"

Age 25: "America has made me soft and fat. I cannot wait to return home."

Age 26: "I guess I'm a little tempted to go to the party, if only to be included in their stories and inside jokes. But these American girls are always so arrogant. I wonder if Fengie is arrogant?"

Age 28: "Two more semesters. Only two more semesters and I can go home."

Age 29: "Fengie - I think about you all the time. I wonder how you've grown up, and what our children will be like. I can't wait to meet you."

Age 30: "Danyal Zameer Amara, PhD. Mother and Father will be so proud!"

Age 30: "Farewell, America. I can't say I will miss you, but you have given me perspective - and for that, I am grateful."

Age 30: "When this plane lands I am going to get down on my knees and kiss the holy ground! I have been away from my home for too long.

Age 31: "Fengie - I've dreamed of this moment since Mother first showed me your photograph - you're as beautiful now as you were then."

Age 35: "A beautiful wife, and now a strong, handsome son! My life is perfect, complete, entire. Fengie, you have made me whole."

Age 37: "Two mighty sons! Fortune smiles upon me!"

Age 41: "I'm so worried for her - this pregnancy has been so hard on Fengie. The symptoms are troubling... She will make it through, I know she will. And the child, Insha'Allah."

Age 41: "Praise Allah! Our new baby boy is alive and healthy - I will treasure him above all else!"

Age 45: "There is an outbreak in Mozambique. Fengie will kill me when she finds out I'm going - but I have no choice. I hope she understands."

Age 45: "I haven't seen this kind of chaos since assisting mother in the villages, and this is so much worse."

Age 46: "They keep adding benches to the waiting area outside the clinic, and there is still never a free space. Our equipment is worse than the bear minimum - how will we ever keep up with this demand?"

Age 47: "The disease just keeps spreading despite our best efforts. It's not Hepatitis we're fighting - it's poverty, and the living conditions that make these people so susceptible."

Age 48: "The symptoms began so slowly. I was so focused on my work I barely noticed them - but there is no denying it now. I just hope I get to see Fengie again before it gets too bad."

Age 48: "I remember the day that Maasai woman screamed that I was cursed and now I fear she was right. I may have been blessed once, but my luck has run out."