Well, everyone, it’s 2013, the year that I return home to America!
I am obviously thrilled at the prospect of seeing all my friends and family back home, but I am starting to become more aware of the fact that a side affect of that will be leaving behind an entire new family here. An American family of volunteers who write songs, go on adventures, invent games (urban dictionary Balderdash anyone?), kill and prepare our food from scratch and occasionally put our heads together and do some really great work. A Senegalese family of some of the most generous, hilarious and wonderful people I’ve ever known. I don’t think I’ll miss the rice-based cuisine or being harassed by every man in the street who thinks he has a shot at a toubab woman to marry him and take him to the US. I do think it will be hard to adjust to the idea of the babies and tiny children I have come to love here not remembering me as they grow up.
But… c’est la vie.
I spent New Years Eve in St. Louis with a group of volunteers eating wonderful food, drinking tasty beverages, and just enjoying the company of some of my best friends. Onward and upward. Here’s to 2013 being another year filled with adventures, love, and kindness for all of us. Dewenati.
“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” -Terry Pratchett