Thursday, February 11, 2010

African Drums

**This is the first of the one shot stories I wrote about Adam and Sarah, first published on the web site.**

After being poked, prodded and punctured repeatedly in order to make sure we were healthy enough and had the proper immunizations that were necessary, we have finally been pronounced safe and sound of body and have been given the proper traveling papers and visas to make the trek to Burkina Fuso for Angelica and Dumonde’s wedding. Mind you, all the medical procedures have in no way rained on my parade or dampened my excitement for the trip; I find I can hardly sleep sometimes for all the eager anticipation I feel about it.

The other times I can’t sleep are because I can’t seem to keep my hands off of Adam! Almost losing him brought so many things into focus for me; the importance of just being together, sharing our lives. I am alive with him in a way I have never been before.

That sounds silly doesn’t it? How can someone be 46 years old and just be discovering these emotions for the first time? The way his giggle lights up my world or when his hand reaches out to me for any reason my heart races and my pelvic muscles tighten with desire? I am afraid I am, as Adam would say, hopefully head over heels in love.


We arrived in Burkina Fuso last night and it has been the most amazing trip, I must admit. We arrived in Casablanca, Morocco 7 days ago and from the moment we stepped off the plane I realized we weren’t in Kansas any more and had Toto been with us, she would most certainly have agreed! It was different in the very best of ways though I realized as I looked around me.

Remember how I described how it felt to walk out of the train station in Venezia, down onto the steps to the Grand Canal? This was much the same experience, walking out of the airport in Casablanca; the air around us felt different, the light and smells were all a part of a different world and we couldn’t wait to explore it.

Casablanca is a modern city, and yet in many places you could be stepping back into history you feel when you still see camels plodding slowly along the roads, carrying people or palettes of goods, presumably for trade. The palettes I mean, not the people! And then there is the smells that greet you, a seemingly different one around every corner. Sometimes it was the smell of the camels true, but sometimes it was a spicy smell, some earthy herb or spice that I couldn’t place and also couldn’t wait to taste. I found I was hungry a LOT in Casablanca, but whether that was Adam’s influence or just the excitement of being able to try new foods I wasn’t sure.

Our first night there we stayed in a wonderfully opulent suite that was a little bit east meets west and that made the whole experience even better, richer somehow. I would have been so upset to have stayed in a hotel that was totally westernized. Of course Adam, in his way of always knowing what is going on inside me knew that and so this hotel was the result of his desire to please me. And both he and the hotel did just exactly that!

The suite had western style furniture, but the coverings and accessories were strictly eastern, Moroccan actually, exotic and erotic both I thought the first time I sank down onto the huge cool and satiny pillows in the sitting room. Oh yes, there was a sofa there as well, but not all guests appreciate sofa’s I guess so the stereotypical pile of pillows adorned one area of the jewel-toned luxuriant Persian carpet. And the colors were all jewel tones, rich and decadent it felt. With brass tables and accessories scattered around the room, including a low table that sat before the couch. It gleamed from being polished and I constantly worried every time Adam sat a bottle of water on it, or a glass of wine!

The rooms exploded with color though, bright patches of ruby reds and emerald greens found every where from the carpet to the art work hanging on the walls. And the bathroom! My oh my, I am still blushing thinking about that bathroom! Or rather what happened in that bathroom. The tub was a pale pink marble, sunken of course (what else would you expect in Casablanca) with gold fixtures that featured dolphins and other unrecognizable sea creatures. Or at least I think they were sea creatures, but no matter, they were beautiful. There was a fountain in one corner or the room, with merrily bubbling water tripping from one level to the next. It was as delightful to the eyes as to the ears and very relaxing. Of course there was also a totally convenient shower stall in there, but really, would I use that when that bath was there? I think not.

The bed was a heavily carved wooden affair of some wood I didn’t readily recognize. But it was draped in mosquito netting, just like in the movies and had to be at least 6 feet across. Ruby satin covered it, with gold tassels on the pillows and it reminded me of something you would see in a picture of Arabian Nights. But these were our Arabian Nights, so I guess that was fitting!

We stayed in Casablanca for 3 days, acclimating a bit, a short pause in what would prove to be an exciting and admittedly taxing journey.

The next leg of the journey was by a bush plane, although I’m not exactly sure why it was called that. It appeared to be a Piper Cub and while not terribly new, seemed perfectly air-worthy and indeed got us all the way to Mopti, Mali by way of Algeria with no problems. Our pilot, Mujab Munefeto was very knowledgeable about the area we traveled over and was also rather humorous. We often found ourselves laughing at his jokes, or just the way he described life on the Dark Continent. Vast areas of sand swam below us many times, rolling and undulating across the desert on its way to some unknown destination. And it did definitely look like it was rolling in certain directions, from the winds I guess which Mujab told us were terrible at times. He also told us that the level of the sand and dunes can change by 50 feet or more after a storm. Is it any wonder that they still find abandoned villages and such after storms?

Sometimes the sand was punctuated occasionally by a desert oasis, seen far below us as bright patches of green, from palm trees or other vegetation that sprung up around it. But there didn’t always seem to be water, that you could see anyway and Mujab said that much of the water was underground now, they didn’t really know why. Droughts, climate changes, God? Who knows he said with a shrug, a careless gesture from a man who knew that it was out of his hands.

That seemed to be a prevalent attitude by many people in Africa. Centuries of being beaten down by a continent that granted little mercy to its people, they mostly just seemed to accept it and continue on with their lives. Most westerners are driven to control, their lives, their surroundings. I think it would not be easy for most of us to live here for long, although people like Adam’s family do so successfully, as do many others. To do it requires the sacrifice of letting the control go and just being.

When we arrived in Mopti, we stayed the night in a hotel, to rest for the journey by car which would take us to Dedougou in Burkina Fuso, where we will catch a boat on the Black Volta River. That journey will end in Botougou which is the village where Dumonde’s home is.

The hotel in Mopti was perfectly acceptable, if not quite up to very many conveniences. Adam constantly warned me to drink only bottled beverages and that the caps not already be broken. I understood the philosophy behind that after living in Italy. It didn’t mean that the local water was bad to drink, only that it had bacteria in it that our bodies weren’t used to and if we didn’t want to spend an extra day camped out in the local bathroom I knew that we had to make sure to be cautious. He also wouldn’t let me drink anything poured over ice, which was of course made from the local water. But oh, how I wanted ice! It was hot and steamy and it was going to get even worse when we catch the boat for the last leg of the trip.

If you are wondering, there are certainly more convenient and quicker ways to get to Burkina Fuso. Dedougou does have an airport and we could have flown in on the bush plane to that city. However, Adam knew that I would appreciate getting to see as much of Africa as possible and I was very happy that he had went to so much trouble arranging all of this. At least I hoped so anyway; tomorrow night would be spent camped along the river and already I was dreading the heat, not to mention that the mosquitos are supposedly horrendous. But what an adventure for us and how the boys will enjoy hearing about it; I include Derek and Ryan in that description as well as Tristan and Geoff!

We slept in relative comfort, the bed having voluminous layers of mosquito net draped around it. And there were large ceiling fans and actually by morning, I found that I was snuggled up closely to Adam because I was actually cold. I tried to savor those goose bumps because I feared they would be the last I would have for a while! In fact I was surprised that it got so chilly here at night so close to the equator.

We were in a completely different Africa now I realized. Not only were the people different but so were architecture, transportation and food. The opulence of Morocco was over with. It is a port city and has anything a westerner could want. This was not the case in this area of Africa. This was the interior and if it wasn’t raised here, it had to be brought in and that I was quickly discovering was quite a process. There were much fewer amenities and what there were we appreciated greatly.

The car trip to Dedougou took about 5 hours. Had there been real roads it might have gone much quicker, but mostly they seemed to be just mud tracks. I made a dry comment to Adam telling him that I appreciated getting to see the jungle up close and personal like this, but that really, a real road would have been a bit more bearable on our butts! He only smiled and said this was the real road, a veritable highway by local standards. Our driver nodded vigorously at that comment, letting me know that it was indeed true. There were two small villages we passed through and both were evidently used to seeing tourists come through; they provided us with cold bottles of water without a word and pointed to the bathrooms. One of the village’s toilet even flushed! Did I say that these villages were small? Make that wide spots in the road, but at least it was nice to know that it is possible to at least tame small patches of the jungle, although I’m sure it must not be easy to keep it that way.

There were still a number of hours left until sunset so we boarded the boats that would take us upriver to Botougou. We would arrive there late in the morning tomorrow and as I said, we would spend the night camped in the jungle.

We were going by large canoes, three of them which surprised me. I would have thought a motorized boat would have been quicker but our guide Mboutu told us that parts of the river are small and shallow and bigger boats can’t get though, so canoes it was. They loaded quite a few supplies onto the canoes and several men with large rifles rode in each canoe. Just a precaution our guide told us, there were occasional wild creatures that get too close or curious. My mind took that to read ‘hungry’, but I tried not to focus on that!

The trip up the river was amazing. The vegetation richly varied in many shades of verdant green, sometimes hanging so low over the water that we had to duck. I had to suppress a shiver each time we had to do that; somewhere I had in the back of my mind things like snakes dropping out of trees onto unaware travelers. You can bet this Kansas girl was very aware. I searched every movement of leaves and branches as our canoes traveled under or near the trees. I think our guide noticed, but wisely did not say a word. He probably recognized a woman on the edge when he saw one!

All in all, while awed by the beauty of the boat trip, I was extremely edgy and unsettled. I wasn’t proving to be the carefree traveler I normally am and that was bothering me a great deal.

“Sarah love,” Adam said to me, “It’s to be expected that you would be a little more concerned out here.” He was holding my hand while they were setting up the tents and I watched. The men with the guns kept careful watch at the jungle around us and that was more alarming than anything else.

Adam pulled me into his arms and nuzzled my neck for a moment, trying to distract my worrisome thoughts. “It will be okay bella, I promise you!”

I took a couple of deep breaths in order to try to shed a bit of the stress and I think it helped. Of course, having Adam’s warm and sinuous body against mine didn’t hurt at all. I pulled him down for a quick kiss and smiled at him. “I know we are perfectly safe, it’s just all so – um, I don’t know, unexpected. I’m not sure what I really thought it was going to be like.”

He giggled against my ear, and then kissed it lightly. It sent shivers of an altogether sort up and down my spine and I felt my belly contract in response. “Maybe it’s not going to be so bad after all, hmm?” he whispered into my ear.

“Yes, maybe!” I responded with a droll laugh.

I watched as they finished setting up the camp and then my attention was taken away from that when I noticed animals on the other side of the river, coming down to drink in the shade of the evening. Nothing came close to us and our guide assured me they wouldn’t.

“No madam, they do not like our smell,” Mboutu told me, a twinkle in his eye. “They will stay far away from us!” he told me with a deep laugh. It seemed funny to me that the animals didn’t like our scent and it made me laugh too; how often I had thought the same of them at the zoo?

Soon a huge bonfire was roaring, which was good because again it was getting cool and that was a relief since it was very humid. The air just seemed to drip with moisture, making your skin slick to the touch.

A couple of the men with guns had gone from the camp while the others were setting it up and soon we heard a few gunshots. This was followed by grins and renewed effort by the men setting up the camp.

“Dinner!” Mboutu told us with a grin. “Very tasty, yes it will be very tasty indeed!”

“Uh, what will it be?” I asked him.

“Oh, possibly a tiger or maybe a crocodile, who knows for sure!” he said, and then laughed at the look of revulsion on my face. “I am sorry madam, no, it will not be such an animal. Some small game I suspect; a few rabbits or maybe a small elk possibly. No crocodile today!” he said with a laugh.

Mboutu had a wicked sense of humor and normally I liked being teased; I was just not my self it seemed.

The hunters did indeed come back with game. I couldn’t see for sure what it was, certainly bigger than rabbits and I quickly decided it was probably better not to ask. And soon they had it cooking and the smells were wonderful! I watched the meat being turned over a spit and my stomach rumbled loudly while my mouth watered disgracefully. Adam was standing next to me and heard my stomach.

“Well, what was that? Are you hungry bella?” he teased, pulling me tighter against him.

I only nodded at him as I stared in fascination at dinner. One of the men was preparing some sort of vegetable to be cooked. He chopped them and wrapped them in huge leaves and then put them in a hole with very hot rocks and then finally covered it over with wet reed-like material; it would help to steam them I suspected.

When I nodded, he whispered in my ear, “I am starving too!” And there was no doubt in my mind that he wasn’t talking about dinner!

It had taken him a while to heal from his injuries and really, only this past 3 weeks had our sex life really returned to normal. Still, the hiatus from physical intimacy had only heightened our desires and it had one other advantage for us; it helped us focus on the ‘getting to know you’ phase again and I was finding that getting to know him further was even better than before.

He amazed me in so many ways, constantly in fact. His caring and devoted spirit was always apparent, intrinsically woven into who he was. You saw it when he dealt with Krista and Ryan, the boys and my kids and family. It’s not that he is one of those persons who have to ‘please’ people, he just cares. And if he can help with something, he will; it’s that simple. I’ve never known anyone with such a big heart and so willing to open wide and love. He has totally given his heart to Krista and I watch him struggle when dealing with her sometimes. There are things he could do to help her and yet she and Ryan want to do it all on their own, so he lets them. But it’s not his choice to do that. What an incredible man that I love and adore, don’t you think?

Our guide and his helpers sat up chairs around the fire where we could sit and eat and I was thankful for that; I mean that I wouldn’t have to sit on the ground! Yes, I know I’m a wimp, but I wanted a chair! While dinner was cooking they rigged up a small and private area for me to take a very quick and frugal shower; the water part being frugal I mean. But it was going to feel wonderful and I was enormously eager for them to finish rigging it. I knew that 10 minutes after I had bathed the sweat off I would be covered again, but hopefully it would not be as smelly; at least not immediately!

I was allowed to get wet, then turn the water off and lather up and then rinse. Very quick, but those few minutes felt wonderful and I emerged in clean clothes and feeling so much better. It seemed I had washed away some of my edginess as well and found that my smile was coming much easier now and I actually laughed several times as I watched the native men ‘bathing’ in the river, with their clothes on of course. Before my shower I would have watched them with wide, fearful eyes but it all seemed less worrisome now. Adam emerged from the shower five minutes after me and he looked and smelled wonderful too.

Maybe too appealing actually. I glanced over at our tent. Inside was a large air mattress and the tent was perfectly private, the material I mean. But still, out here in the middle of this camp was no place to be getting amorous, but my body was starting to question my brains logic. As usual…

Dinner was wonderful; I still didn’t question what kind of meat it was, but whatever it was, it was delicious as were the vegetables. There were fresh bananas for dessert that they sort of fried with some sort of hard and lumpy brown sugar that they pounded fine before sprinkling it over the cooking bananas. It was wonderful and I sat back in the chair, a huge smile on my face, roly-poly round and very happy.

Several of the men had brought drums with them and we sat back to listen. They were different than the drums we normally think of, covered in animal hide and painted with native art. The varying sizes of the drums provided a wide variety of sound; some deep and others higher toned, but all very harmonic and interesting. Mboutu told us that each man makes his own drum and the pictures on them are depictions of his own life. It all seemed very primitive and yet, we were in a very primitive place. Men still guarded our perimeter and they took turns at it, waiting their turn to eat and later, to drum and dance.


The drums were enthralling, captivating. Their rhythm flowed through me and I found myself moving with the beat, the tempo’s varying from slow to fast, usually building to a throbbing crescendo and then suddenly changing totally, without a word being said by the drummers.


The rhythm changed, becoming sharper and quicker and a couple of the men got up and danced, their bare feet pounding the dirt and vegetation unceasingly in the beat and as the tempo changed, they kept up until at times it was all just a blur.

The drums beat on and a slower pace started; it was mesmerizing and I found myself moving to it. One of the dancers came to me and pulled me to my feet and I tried to shy away. I couldn’t dance like these men, I hadn’t the grace and suppleness they had, but he wouldn’t let go and soon I was lost in the beat, feeling each note soar through me and soon my feet and body were moving and swaying on their own, caught in the compelling pounding of the drums. I felt intoxicated, gripped by some unknown force and found myself kicking off my shoes that I might feel the earth beneath my feet and let its power flow freely though my spirit.

I danced until I couldn’t dance any more and finally Adam led me away from the fire, where they dancers and the drummers kept up their almost hypnotic actions. Adam quickly zipped us up safely into our haven for the night and immediately pressed against me, his erection pushing imploringly against my belly that was quivering with my own need.

“Ah bella, you were magnificent. Beautiful,” he said, kissing me feverishly, nipping at my neck, his breath warm against the moistness of my skin.

I pulled his head to mine, molding my lips to his, my mouth playing erotically with his, tugging and teasing his lips and tongue. I felt his tongue thrust deeply into my mouth and my knees threatened to buckle beneath me and he felt that and quickly removed my clothes as well as his own. He laid me down on the mattress, never pulling his mouth from mine, our tongues dancing their own rhythm against each others.

“Sweet, so sweet,” Adam murmured against my mouth and I felt his hands traveling down my body, cupping my breasts and massaging them with hands that were trembling with desire. His mouth slid down my neck and nibbled at the cords that stood out as I stretched so that I might feel more of his lips. I didn’t think about how sweaty I was from the dance because I knew that soon we would both be covered anew with sweat from our lovemaking.

I reached my hand down his body, past his firm belly and stopped to tease it, my fingers playing with the softly curling hairs on it before taking his heated length into my eager fingers. My hand glided over him, touching the velvety softness of his head with an eager drop of moisture escaping it. I gently spread it over him, feeling him shudder as I did so. He felt huge in my hand, solid and ready for me I thought as I felt him jerk excitedly in my hand. I tenderly stroked him, loving how he felt beneath my fingers.

His mouth clamped around my nipple, making it flush as he teased it, making it grow taut with desire as he caressed it with the firm tip of his tongue. He swirled over and over that sensitive bud of flesh, drawing it out until it was pebble-hard and aching in his mouth. Just when I thought I couldn’t stand it any longer he switched to my other nipple, lavishing it with the same attention and I was already so close to orgasm, my muscles contracting deep in my belly and I knew that I wasn’t going to last long before that first orgasm washed over me.

He moved rapidly from nipple to nipple, teasing with his teeth and I was moaning wildly by then, my hips undulating with their own rhythm, remarkably similar to the rhythm of the drums had I only realized it. My fingers were still grasping at Adam’s now wildly trembling length, tugging softly as I felt him respond beneath my fingers.

His mouth moved back up to mine then, claiming it for his own. The kiss was deep and shattering and I felt not only my body opening up to him but my soul as well. I gave him every thing I had to give, not only my love and my body but the very core of me, and I demanded the same of him, which he readily gave. His lips traced softly over my passion-swollen lips and I cried out again, trying to urge him to enter me, but he only smiled and kissed his way down my body.

I felt his tongue swirl around my hips and that made my muscles convulse tightly and I closed my eyes tightly, barely holding onto my control.

“Adam, please, I need you in me. Now!” I practically screamed, my voice high and tight as I forced the words through my throat that was tightened with desire. I was aching everywhere; I needed him with a depth of passion that demanded satisfaction.

He paused only briefly and I saw his head move for a moment, but I could not tell if he looked up at me or not as it was so dark in the tent. The drums continued their beguiling rhythm outside our tent and I was glad for that; it gave us privacy for this sacred and loving act.

And then his mouth was on me, spreading the soft and tender folds of me that were drenched with the honeyed juices of my passion. His tongue slid greedily along the inner lips and clung to them and then I was coming, hard and he was lapping gently at me, more and more softly as I convulsed through the peak of my orgasm.

I was frantic then and tugged him roughly up to me, pulling his lips down to mine in a deeply hypnotic kiss that finally made him loose control. He plunged into my hot and wet depths, settling in deeply and as he paused for a moment, I felt him shudder and I knew that his passion was only barely controlled and so together we worked to release it.

He moved in and out of me deeply, exploring those dark chasms within me that I bid him entrance to. We were by then mindless, our bodies moving together seeking that single objective, of sharing our love and passions. He repeatedly plumbed my wet recesses and I moved against him, eagerly raising my hips to meet each thrust, only to pull away again. My body as well was shuddering with need again and I was on the brink, waiting breathlessly for him because all it would take was his release to start my own.

On and on we went, keeping beat with the frantic tempo of those drums, wild drums of the jungle, primitive and spell-binding. I nipped lightly at his shoulder, tasting the saltiness of his own sweat on my tongue. His lips found mine again and then we were both climbing passions path together, our cries lost in one another mouths and we ground our bodies together in response.

He rolled over and pulled me with him and we both caught our breath, enjoying the rapid beats of our heats and the headiness that follows our lovemaking. The drums were slowing some, almost weaving their way into our bodies and minds, bidding us good sleep. I lay my head against Adam’s damp chest and sighed; I felt totally happy and relaxed. He hugged me to him tightly and bent to kiss me.

“I love you Sarah. Thank you for coming on this journey with me.”

“I wouldn’t have missed it for the world Adam,” I told him, a mere whisper against his chest.

“I mean the whole journey Sarah, not just Africa.”

I nodded and said, “Yes my love, I know.” I felt the ring on my finger and absently played with it as I often did. “I love you too.”

The drums slowed to a very soft beat and then stopped. The cool night air started to creep into the tent, cooling sweaty bodies that were cuddled together, savoring the simple joy in their shared love. The darkness crept around us and we slept.

Copyright © 2010 by Cynthia Hope Hodge


Tigger said...

Hope, your back! I check the site from time to time hoping to see something new. I could go to the web site, but I couldn't get ont he message board. I felt so alone...... Hope this means good things.

Hope said...

Hey there Tigger!

Yes, back here now. I've missed you kiddo. Keep watching, there will be more on here including a couple of new stories.

Deena said...

woo hoo! I just saw a comment on another board that you were back! Hooray for Hope. I'm waiting patiently for more.

Engbunny said...

Yo Baby! I finally got internet at home! YAY!!! I cannot wait to see what you have in store for us. :-)

Hope said...

Hey, great to hear from you all. Hang on because there is more coming!

Macy said...

Hey Hope, it's great to have you back. You have NO idea how much we've missed you. So, what do you have in store for us?