NPR logo Chef Morou, President Koroma Bring Monday Flavor

Chef Morou, President Koroma Bring Monday Flavor

Sorry folks ... Dealing with a minor medical situation here. One of the kids is sick — got stung by bees, actually. Yikes. I'm trying to do what I need to do and get out of here.

One of the things we try to do here is bring you stories you're not getting everywhere, or to tell those stories in ways you don't always get to hear everywhere. Africa is a place that we try to showcase, in part, because we don't talk about Africa very often ... unless it's in the context of disaster.

This isn't to diminish any of the problems in Africa; but it is to say that it's also important to pay attention when people on the continent are trying to address them. That's why we were pleased to bring you our interview with Ernest Bai Koroma, the President of Sierra Leone. If you saw the movie Blood Diamond, or if you pay any attention to Africa news, then you know about the use of diamonds to fund the horrible civil war waged across Sierra Leone. Former Liberian Dictator Charles Taylor is set to begin trial for his role in stroking that conflict (we've discussed Taylor on the program, as well). But Koroma was elected as a change agent last month. It is VERY interesting to hear him talk about his vision for Sierra Leone; when is the last time you heard of that country descried as "heaven on earth"?

... And speaking of heaven, we end with a visit with up-and-coming restaurateur Morou Ouattara. Ouatarra is currently competing on the Food Network's The Next Iron Chef. We believe the taping is already completed, but we couldn't get him to tell us who the winner is. Chef Morou's story of how he came here from the Ivory Coast, learned the restaurant business and is now trying to introduce Americans to the flavors of his homeland is yet another story about diversity ... and change. A delicious one.

And in the middle of today's program, a very personal story about how one military man believes that constant deployments helped destroy his marriage. He is not some big expert and he doesn't have a fancy degree. But it's one man's story that's worth hearing. Listen, and tell us what you think.

Now, I gotta go put the mommy hat on ...