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  • The crows always knew when the rain was coming. They gathered on the rooftops like old men preparing to commentate on a football game: a peanut gallery for the weather. Perhaps they were actually saying something, but we never understood it through the clicking of their feet on the roof.

    We knew when the rain was coming, too.

    Sometimes it was the lights flipping off and on again after a few minutes. The American students screamed each time this happened. The Rwandans continued about their business; this was their everyday.

    Sometimes it was the dull rumble of thunder in the distance, coming closer and closer, and if you looked outside at just the right moment you might also see the lightning spiking down to the far-off ground, and as you watched you hoped that in a few minutes you weren't going to be the far-off ground in someone else's vision.

    Then, after a still moment or two, the rain on tin roofs: first a patter then a roar.
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