Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Abdi on This American Life!


On July 4th our friend and newest family member Abdi Nor was featured on This American Life based on ongoing interviews with Leo Hornak from the BBC.

The story is a wonderful reminder about why people want to live in America, the value of incorruptible police, how difficult life is for refugees, and how much is added to America by it's "outsiders".
The comment section on Twitter and on the Facebook site for TAL are a heartfelt outpouring of goodwill just in case you need a boost for your faith in humanity.

One of my favorite lines is from Hassan Iftin Abdi's big brother, a university student, refugee, and wise fellow. He says "sometimes luck is fair".  It was echoed many times in social media in the days that followed.

Thanks to all who have supported Abdi and Hassan in small and huge ways over time including Dick Gordon, Paul Salopek, Cori Princell, Ben Bellows, Nene Reiley, Margaret Caudill-Slosbeg, Mark Yarnell, John Hiley, and Pamela Gordon. These are just some of the people in our particular Abdi support circle.

Leo reminded me of a message I sent to our Abdi team over a year ago as we were all fretting over his upcoming interview with the US embassy.

Because of the radio …. We met Abdi and started a thing.

What we all have in common is the ear tuned to a good story, a voice over the wire.

I was cleaning the chicken coop today, a job I like better than you might think. It's all real in a chicken coop. All the metaphor is concrete and amusing. I treat these chickens well — not extravagantly but decently. I cannot save the world of suffering chickens through these particular chickens but I can acknowledge that they deserve it and do my part in the ecosystem. One of my parts in the ecosystem.  There is something in how this all adds up in my mind that speaks to why it makes any sense to pick one Somali refugee and say "come" we will try to help". It is not a programme or even a project, it is just one live being that would be better off secure and able to work within his capacities and nature.

Abdi goes to the US embassy tomorrow for a 7:30 am interview. I am restless and alive with anticipation. Can so much and so many people be bound together by one civil servant sitting in an office for a 15 minute "interview"?  If you had 5 or 15 minutes to decide someones fate what would you ask them?

Please listen and enjoy. You may also want to listen to his interviews and shows on BBC and The Story from Dick Gordon "Messages from Mogadishu".

May you feel the love and support of your own circle. 


Lorrie said...

I just listened to the podcast This American Life featuring Abdenour - what lows and highs! Maybe I can get a message to him through your community.. Welcome to America! So glad you made it here. May your life here be blessed and may you shine light on the hardship refugees endure in the persuit of better. While I have never lived through such fear I can certainly imagine and empathize.

Gay Bumgarner through friends and family said...

He is a very special young man and he is loving his chance to be an American. It was timely to be reminded of our national dream.
I will share with him.

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