Minneapolis, Atlanta, Dakar, Cape Town.
I have never seen such beautiful people as those from Senegal. With skin that looks like dark silk, I couldn’t peel my eyes away as we refueled in their country. As we waited on the tarmac (unable to leave the plane unless Dakar was our final destination) I watched the unbelievably gorgeous workers of the Dakar airport go through their normal routine to secure the plane. I guess, at first impression, I was shocked by their look because I grew up in Suburbia Minnesota. Not a lot of mixed races in Plymouth, mainly limited to the Arians, few Asians, and a decent Somalian population downtown.
Even seeing the people who were sitting at E27 when I arrived in Atlanta, I learned quickly that this trip would be much more of a culture shock than I was anticipating. That’s why I’m doing it though, right?
Now, as I sit on my second 8-hour flight from Senegal to Cape Town, South Africa, I can’t quite find the right words to describe my expectations. The man sitting next to me happens to be a teacher at the University of Cape Town, so I appreciate the insight he offers to the structure, size and breakdown of class and the University as a whole. Although, I have to be honest, I’m clearly not making this trip for the structural education.
More importantly, I’m making this trip for the cultural education. Just peering out the tiny airplane window in Dakar, the site of small, worn buildings and scarce landscapes gave me more perspective than I could gain in a year of Plymouth.
As I write this post into a word document (to be posted when I find wireless) it is currently 11:25am in Cape Town, South Africa. Meanwhile it is 4:25am in Plymouth, Minnesota. I find myself somewhere in between — on more levels than just the time of day.
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