The process to begin contextualizing my experiences in Tanzania is truly not an easy one.
There are moments throughout my day that I need to remind myself that it. was. real. Because as I enter back into this cycle of monotony that I call life, I have this unwavering feeling that something is different about me. And in those .02 seconds of confusion that follow this sudden moment of awareness, hundred of thoughts of what could be wrong with are birthed and developed.
And then it hits me.
And then I remember.
That really happened.
That I was really there.
And. That I. Will really. Never. Be the same.
This trip was filled with so many moments of Shangaa, the multifaceted word meaning amazement, shock, bewilderment and awe. The educational, spiritual, mental and personal growth and enlightenment that happened to me throughout this month in Tanzania is truly astonishing.
The most evident growth, in my opinion is my growth as a writer. I went from someone who didn't consider themselves a writer at all before the trip to someone who is getting asked for their email at the end of the show because an audience member had to read " the rest of my work."
Work that didn't exist of course, since the only thing I had written for the last four years was research papers, homework assignments, and instagram captions.
But work that will be produced, because writing is now a tool I will use for the rest of my life as a way to share people's stories on a greater scale. As a way to share my stories, too.
Working as a writer throughout this trip also taught me to be more observant. At some point in the trip, Professor Madrazo challenged us to start looking the world and our environment as writers. This meant a great deal to me because I was able to take in things with a greater meaning attached to them. Every direction I looked came with an immense sense of responsibility to give the moment the respect it deserves. To take things in whole-heartedly, rather than just "living in the moment" as many of the mantras imposed upon my generation suggest.
For a deeper look into my written work, click on Micro Essays and Final Travel Essays tab.
For a deeper look at my education growth overall, I would check out the Pre-Departure Research and Teaching and Play Writing Workshops tabs. However, each of these tabs contains a truth you can "educationally" grow from, so I would check out every tab. But, that's just me.
How can't you be inspired, with view like those, amiright?!
For a deeper look at all the other ways I grew, check out... all the other tabs.
It'll be fun.
The Tanzania tab contains a detailed overview of the different locations we visited, the tours and excursions we went on, and some of my personal experiences throughout them all!
The Showcase tab describes the work my classmate, Edward, and I did as leaders of a group of children in Light in Africa, an orphanage discussed in the Tanzania tab. It will also have photos and videos of the play our girls put together! This was my proudest moment throughout the trip.
ACTion Fest: Tanzania in NY outlines the work we did once we got back to the U.S.
The Journals tabs is a quick video of the daily journals we wrote in Tanzania.
Asante sana sana sana!
Thank you very, very, very much!