Tomorrow’s the day! Just a hop to Chicago, a skip to Istanbul, and a jump to Kigali and I’m in the heart of Africa for the next two months. I know that my time in Africa will change me but it’s up to the land, the people, and all of my new experiences to decide what that change will be. It will surely be for the better.
I have wanted to travel my whole life. I’ve been obsessed with the world ever since I was a small child armed with a talking electronic globe, a heavy blue atlas, an antiquated encyclopedia set and a wild imagination. So you can imagine how monumental tomorrow will be. It will be the beginning of a lifelong journey of exploration to all regions of the earth; the beginning of a journey to soak up the sights, sounds, and smells of this diverse planet.
This first trip will not be an easy one. I’m traveling to a land with a history marred by senseless conflict and strife. Many of the things I will see will not be pretty. There will be no Eiffel Tower, no Coliseum, no Big Ben. What there will be are reminders of a gory past: memorials, refugee camps, gravesites, and museums. Not to mention mosquitoes.
Of course the entirety of my study abroad trip won’t be depressing. Rwanda is known as the “land of a thousand hills” and has so much natural beauty. Everyone I have talked to has said that Rwandans are some of the kindest people you’ll meet. Rwanda also grows a lot of coffee and tea, which is something this caffeine addict is extremely excited about.
With that, I know you’re all going to be refreshing this page again and again, sitting on the edge of your desk chair/Starbucks seat/couch cushion eagerly awaiting the next installment of the blog, but just sit tight. Laptop-less, I won’t be able to write again until I can access an internet café in Kigali (that’s hopefully soon). But, wish me well and send kind thoughts my way as I set out on this journey halfway around the world.