I used to be an anthropologist who lived and worked in Africa. It was a good life. There was exploration, adventure, and story.
Always and everywhere, there were the stories. Sometimes they were traditional tales that might begin, “Once upon a time there was a great chief who loved to eat turtles.” More often they were modern stories that would start out something like, “Last week Ibrahim dreamt that his wife had given all their money to the church and he woke up still angry at her and ….” Or, in the expat style, “One time we went to Arusha to go rock climbing but Kira dragged us to the bars and we ended up scaling the clock tower at dawn ….”
Eventually I decided it was the stories that I loved, especially the ones that drew from fact but weren’t constrained by it, the kind of stories we tell each other to make sense of our lives, to make sense of the world. So now I am a writer trying to tell some good stories.