Monday, August 3, 2009

Adios Africa

I am in Nairobi now. My flight leaves in about 11 hours. The travel books describe Nairobi with words like Nai-robbery and sinister. I have been here 3 days and have not felt sinister or like robbing anyone. As a matter of fact I would say this; if you can spend only one day in East it in Nairobi. This city gave me my first taste of Africa 12 years ago and it was love at first sight. It is the hub of diversity in this region of the world...towering new skyscrapers that look over a pristine national park on one side and one of the largest slums in the world on the other. Economic disparity is more evident here than anywhere. You can see just about any African animal in the wilderness just beyond the city limits. Everyone speaks swahili, and everyone speaks english. Masaai warriors walk down the road dressed in their bright blue and red shukas. 6 lane highways are sometimes brought to a dead halt by herds of cattle crossing the road. The sky is dotted with jumbo jets and jumbo Maribu storks. It is a city worth experiencing. It kind of reminds me of a mega sized Birmingham and it feels a little like home.

In the past week I have been to Dar es Salaam (an amazing city very different from Nairobi, I felt at home there as well and loved the coastal culture, I will write a lot about it soon), Zanzibar, and taken a 15 hour bus ride across kenya and Tanzania in which I successfully avoided Tanzanian immigration one final time (please remind me to tell about this when I get home). I have seen Kilimanjar one last time, I don't think it was a coincidence that the clouds parted as the bus drove by. I think the mountain was telling me Kwaheri.

So this is my situation, I have 10 US dollars, 500 Kenya shillings, 3 cancelled credit cards that I keep for sentimental value, and an envelope full of travelers cheques that I have no intention of using. If I can get through the rest of the day with the 500 shillings that will give me 10 US dollars to get me through Europe and back to Alabama. I don't know how many miles I have to travel but I am going to budget myself 1 dollar per 1000 miles, that should be plenty.

I am missing Africa already and I havent left yet. But I am missing home more. I have much that I have to do when I get home, and much more that I want to do. I know life is going to slap me in the face hard. Hopefully I can smile and roll with the punches. And I am glad that I can honestly say, at least for some of you, I will see you tomorrow, if God wishes of course :) . So see you tomorrow. Thanks for reading, I will probably write a few more when I get back.



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