Learning to like new things is a part of changing cultures.  Bishop David Roller had a saying he would share with children making the cross-over.  “It’s not worse. It’s not better.  It’s just different.”  One youngster revised that mantra with, “It’s not worse, it’s not worse, it’s not worse.” That is often how we feel.  If we just keep reminding ourselves of that, maybe it won’t all seem so crazy.

Beans are a good example of that change for our family in Burundi. We were learning to eat beans more often in Michigan but we didn’t realize how much of a bean family we would become here in Burundi. Meat is a luxury that most Burundians only enjoy on special occasions. And it isn’t easy to obtain meat in a familiar (or even comfortable) form in much of the country. Open air “boucheries” display a variety of animal parts, all allegedly edible. With beans in abundance and grown all year long, we are learning to embrace beans…and change. The kids are doing remarkably well at having flexible tastes and are willing to try just about anything.

 Hannah wanders among the brightly colored bean plants while Leah arranges the drying pods.


And the boys love to eat them with rice and cabbage.