I was intrigued to stumble across the Liberian response to Obama’s inauguration, thanks to a young woman calling herself Scarlett Lion (I’m assuming that’s not her real name, but either way, what a cool name). I’ve seen other photos of Liberia, but hers are the best I’ve seen. She seems to be staying in my old neighborhood, even. I am glad to see how inspired Liberians are by Obama’s election and inauguration. (To be fair and bipartisan, Bush actually visited Liberia and was well received, and even attempted an African dance in what is likely to be considered by historians to be the best moment of his presidency).
If you click around Scarlett’s site, you’ll find pictures of Mamba Point, where I lived, and the Ducor Hotel, where I had my first dinner in Liberia (I somewhat adapt this scene in my work in progress, though the Tuttle family goes to the more famous Hotel Africa).
It’s been hard to recall equatorial Africa when it’s -8 F in Minneapolis and we haven’t seen the ground for weeks… even the streets and sidewalks are covered with corrugated black ice. In one way, it’s nice to see a proper Minnesota winter in these globally warmed times, but in another way, it’s really cold and miserable. So Scarlett’s pictures bring back memories and a jolt of welcome mental warmth.
In other news, I’m winging off to Denver for the ALA conference and the Random House reception there… if anyone who reads this blog happens to be there, please come by tomorrow night and say Hi. The big awards come out Monday morning. It’s not clear yet whether I’m allowed to attend that event, but I’ll be close by anyway and get a sense of the buzz that follows the biggest event in children’s books shy of a Harry Potter release. I’ll post pictures early next week, though I’m no Scarlett Lion when it comes to photography.