Monday, August 20, 2012
The International Experience I
Day I - Africa
So far so good considering the various logistical occurrences that have happened. For starters, my initial perspective revolves around the access to water, the mere notion that as an American, I have not taken the opportunity to become fluent in another language and my first exposure to how some individuals here are living.
"I am humbled" about how water is highly revered here and to think how we/I take for granted that the water we use to simply brush our teeth is safe to use. Here, the water is considered unsafe and could be detrimental to one's health. Thus far, I have gone through the day asking myself "how will I get enough water to drink and use today that will be sufficient enough to serve my various needs"? My one solution has been to heat my water up in the coffee pot in my room and reuse one of my recycled water bottles, by refilling the container with the hot water, so that by the time I needed to use the water, the water would at least be at room temp. While this is a hurdle that can be slightly curtailed, my inability to effectively and efficiently communicate with the countrymen is troublesome to me.
The common language spoken here is Spanish while French is another tongue that is secondarily used. In short, if there are individuals who speak various languages and I only speak one, how can I really compete and be effective in an interdependent world that is constantly evolving?
Lastly, I'm Staying at the Hilton Hotel which is located a few meters (1/4 mile) away from the country's International Airport (an airport that's measurably small) is nicely built and quite charming with fairly good security. However, right across the street from the hotel there's a two-story home/hut/shack where the occupants are constantly seen outside in an unemotional stare that could be considered dire, hopeless, and institutionalized. The occupants provision have various windows on the first floor, where the inside is visibly hallow and from a distance feels cold. The second floor is covered from atop, but is surrounded by the country's climate and is accessed by a 10-foot ladder that is housed outside. To bare witness to this, is... (speechless).
Malabo, Equatorial Guinea 11:10 am (+5 hours EST).
"As Always, Stay Inspired..."