Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Love/ Hate

Study abroad is a love/ hate relationship. Sometimes I love Senegal, sometimes I hate it. It all depends at what comes at you and when. If the littlest thing hits you on the wrong day it can just about crush you, but those days when you feel awful, and then you walk in the door and Butterball runs up to you to give you a hug and say your name makes it so much better. As the students here have discussed, it’s easier to like things a lot more when you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I can get over not getting a piece of fruit each day when I know I am doing my own grocery shopping in a week. It was a much different feeling when I first got here, didn’t know where to buy a piece of fruit, how much it should cost, if I should bargain, whether or not it would make me sick, whether or not the vendor had change and by the end of it all if it was even worth it to buy the apple or not. A lot of the things on these two lists have a lot of aspects to them. For example, I love chocoleca- I love it, but I hate it’s competitor chocomousse which is always really runny. And in the end I hate them both when I have to eat them with bread everyday for 5 months straight. So yes, I like littering but hate the pollution. It’s a double edged sword. 


Things I Love about Senegal

  1. Faux-tella (chocopain, chocoleca, chocomousse,- all peanut/chocolate spreads, imagine nutella but with peanut instead of hazelnut
  2. Not having to look for a trashcan (ie littering- it’s quite convenient)
  3. Awesome Mangoes for 50 cents (but sadly went out of season around October)
  4. Easily Purchased fruit
  5. Akon
  6. Cheap and beautiful fabrics
  7. Bargaining
  8. The many juices here- Bouye (Baobab), Dittah, Bissap
  9. Ngalax- A smoothie type substance of Baobab, peanut, banana and coconut
  10. The relaxed pace of life
  11. General friendliness of people
  12. My Wolof Teacher- Oumoul
  13. Amusing sheep/goats (hey Alejandra- remember when that goat? Hahah)
  14. Marie Gaye, Mustapha and Thany- My host family from St. Louis
  15. A break from Kalamazoo
  16. A unique study abroad experience, and generally more badass than Europe (I still love you all my Europe based friends!)
  17. Cheap snacks
  18. Sharing
  19.  And of course- My Host family in Dakar (even when they piss me off every now and then)


Things I hate about Senegal

  1. Pollution
  2. The heat (written in September, now- the “cold” I am ill equipped for this slightly cool weather)
  3. Power outages
  4. Lack of privacy
  5. Always communicating in French and Wolof
  6. Ceebujen at least three times a week
  7. Only ever watching crappy Wolof soap operas on TV
  8. People trying to scam you
  9. No coffee shops
  10. Very expensive or bad granola bars
  11. Bad pens
  12. Having to share everything all the time.
  13. General lake of variety in food. (Fish or Rice; Cake or Death?)

1 comment:

Rachel* said...

I love how you include Akon... :)