Woah. Right now as I type this, I am sitting in my room at the International Hostel at the University of Ghana. Before I go into any detail about my journey, let me first just say that the one thought I have been able to process with one hundred percent clarity is the fact that I am on a different continent right now. Specifically, Africa. AFRICA. Although, you’d think that it wouldn’t be that strange of a concept to me considering this is not the first time I have traveled internationally. Yet, everything I have done so far (well, not much aside from arriving at the hostel, unpacking, and then having dinner) has been slightly colored by the understanding that I am thousands of miles away from nearly everything and everyone that is familiar to me. I’m sure it will be a scary feeling at times, but I can’t say that I’m not somewhat exhilarated by it. I want to let myself miss home and the people I love, but I’m determined not to let my nostalgia jade my experiences here.
In short, I’m open to whatever you throw at me, Ghana. Like when we discovered that the water was turned off after we arrived at the hostel sweaty and ready for showers. Or when we were served amazing local food for dinner like fried plantain, savory vegetable stew, and spiced rice at the outdoor cafeteria. (I imagine they will be beating up my intestines in a few hours.) Or when our resident director warned us to stay away from “professional friends” who are notorious for trying to befriend foreigners, offering to help them find their way around, and then somehow trying to scam them/steal from them. Or when I met the incredible people who I am beginning to get to know on this trip and I’ll be joining in a few to hang out at a nearby bar.
My room at the International Student Hostel (AKA Ish)
The courtyard at the hostel. Lovely!
Tall grass on the school grounds at dusk.
The view from one of the balconies by my room. See those little red mounds? They are actually enormous termite hills.
Okay, so that silvery thing in the middle of this photo? That is one of the angry birds that likes to squawk at all hours of the day every day.
And, of course, my roomie, Corey! She's a sweetie.
To close out this post, I will describe to you how huge and swollen my feet are from flying in planes all day. My toes look like fat little purple slugs. Cute.