Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Back in Ghana: Home, Sweet Home?

After 4+ months of nonstop travel, I'm finally back in Ghana for more than a week at a time. Home, sweet home, eh? It's a strange feeling being back. It's strange to be anywhere for more than a few days, but strange here especially. I remember when I left back in mid-November. I went out to a local jazz club the night before and met a few new expat friends. "Will be you be my insta-friend?" one girl asked who was still new to Ghana. That's how it had been. In the months leading up to this massive trip, I had met so many people from all around the world, and none of us knowing anyone else all became fast friends. Some of those friendships became full relationships and others remained fleeting acquaintances, but when I left, I left a life behind. Settling in again some 19 weeks later, I realize the life I left no longer exists.

It's incredible how transient life can be. In 4 years of college, I could go away for a weekend, for a school break, for a semester abroad, and I could always rely that many of the same faces would greet me when I returned. Not so for in the life of an extreme expat. Many of my Ghana friends were on short-term contracts and have left or are leaving. Others will take significant work to rehabilitate after so much time apart. After that little fire incident in my apartment, I don't even have my same room anymore (though my new place is exponentially nicer). After starting from scratch in a new country almost every week, you might think this would feel familiar for me, but it doesn't.

And so I start again.

7 months down and 5 to go. I'm debating what I should try to accomplish in these last 5 months. There's still so much left of Africa I need to see. So much personal improvement put off by travel. So many books and projects and people. At the very least, I'd like to do one more thing interesting enough to warrant a spot on the BBC. What do you think? What should I try to accomplish in my remaining time?

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