She knows I appreciate stories and she tells me to write them down for her. Sometimes what she tells me is a (broken) English version of Ethiopian folk tale. Other times she just makes up nonsense. AND IT IS HYSTERICAL.
Her English is choppy, but one of my secret talents is TOTALLY understanding accents/speech issues (Seriously. I could make money off this. After having been on many missions trips to foreign speaking countries, and having gone through 3 American adoptions where the kids come with massive, massive speech issues, I've gotten gooood. Ask my mom.) So she tells me things, I translate them to my family as closely as I can, and then I write them down to appease her (and so I can remember the wonderful things she comes up with).
Here is her "Wonderful Story" (yup. That's the title) that she came up with one night on our vacation. I wish I had it on video; it would be so much better if you could hear her (Her English is actually phenomneal for someone who has only been here 4 months.She is so intelligent, it is amazing. I mean, I understand EVERYTHING she says!) And I may have fixed the grammar, but she honestly came up with all of this herself!
Video or no video,you'll laugh, I promise.
Simenesh’s Wonderful Story:
A short tale from our Ethiopian Adoptee and Resident Partially English-Speaking Comedian.
Typed/Grammatically Enhanced by: Isabella Kiss, as told by her sister Simenesh during a picnic dinner
“I was raised by lions,” says Simenesh, totally straight faced and out of the blue. “There was no orphanage. I lived with lions, 5 lions, also 5 tigers, a zebra and some giraffes in a cave in Waliso. They did not eat me. They loved me. But I had no clothes, only leaves from trees. Pine needles, actually. I was naked. Unfortunately, the lions only ate cheese, for all the thirteen years I was there.” (Writer interrupts: “Simenesh, where did lions get cheese?” “Sea turtles, mate,” says Lacianna, the Hungarian sister.) “Nooo,” says the Ethiopian one, “They went and got the cheese in America, not Ethiopia. But I ate nothing, because I don’t eat cheese from America. Only Ethiopian cheese, the kind they put in the Gomen, which is good cheese.
“Then one day I got on one of the giraffes and rode it to Addis Ababa to get some food. I also had a dream of Mama and Papa. Mama was naked and had no clothes. Papa was the size of 4 or 5 people… like that guy [Andre the Giant] in The Princess Bride! (Ummm…Nevermind. Okay, carry on.) The police caught me though, and locked me up in their building. You cannot ride naked on a giraffe in the city; it’s bad. I was there with the police for 24 years. (Simenesh, you are only 13 years old…how does that work out?” “No, I am really 37, the tribal leaders were wrong. They Lied. I’m not 10, not 13, but 37.” “Oh, of course you are! You’ve also told me you are Japanese…just continue.”) I still had no food and no clothes. Eventually the lions came and rescued me. (“It took them 24 year to get to you?” “Yes.”) They brought me to the …tralalatratratrtttrr… house (“The transition house?” “Yes, that.”) where I met Susan (the adoption agency worker). I got some clothes finally and something to eat other than the cheese the lions would buy in America. Then Mama and Papa came and brought me to America. The lions were sad. And I still don’t like cheese.”
“Really, that is your story? Well, that is interesting and totally unlike everything we were told,” says the Writer.
“Yes, that is my story. You should write down that story, Bella.” says Simenesh “It is a wonderful story.” Then she breaks into a spontaneous song about the wonder of the story she just wove for us.
Yup. Thats her story and she and I are sticking to it. My sister was raised by cheese consuming lions in an Ethiopian cave. We adopted her and we haven't gotten her to like cheese...yet.