Wal Mart in the Sahara: Thoughts on the Self-Aware Life

No trouble finding a parking spot at Wal Mart in Uganda. Photo courtesy of Aaron Mason. I cannot wait to get my 4WD and drive on these African roads.


Friday, November 23, 2012













Black Friday: A Wal Mart in the Sahara

“It is the most important rule of the desert. You must learn to watch, to be sure, and always remember where you have come from.”

-Saharan Tuareg nomad

quoted by Amanda Jones in her story “One Night in the Sahara.”  (From the book The Kindness of Strangers**  by Lonely Planet)

The Kindness of Strangers







After reading this quote, I’m determined to do one thing better:  remember where I park at Wal Mart.  Whether it’s the excitement (or dread) of going in a Super Center, I often won’t be aware of my parking row or spot.

From the chorus of car alarm horns I hear in Wal Mart parking lots, I know I’m not alone. We fumble with shopping lists, cell phones, and finding an empty spot, then empty cart, we lose our bearings.

Better yet, we never have them. It’s caused by a lack of living in the moment and being in too big a hurry to get someone where else, instead of taking note of where we are.

The Saharan nomad quoted above understood this art of self-awareness.  To him, it could be a matter of life and death.   “ . . .  most important rule of the desert . . . always remember where you come from.”

Black Friday begins Thursday night at Wal Mart.  I may drive over the Short Pump, Virginia Super Center to study this feeding frenzy I’ve heard so much about.

If I do, I’ll try to pay attention and remember my parking spot.

*Trivia:  Is it Wal Mart or Walmart or WalMart or “Wall-Marks?”

**  The Kindness of Strangers is a cherished book I return to before each overseas trip. As we prepare to depart for Africa in January, I’m enjoying (again) the stories of strangers benefiting from the hospitality of folks world wide.  Learn more at Amazon.com.


Read free sample chapters from our new book, Christmas Jelly.

  • My Life Verse is,  “But seek first the Kingdom  of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”
  • Matthew 6:33    See this verse in various translations.



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