While we are going to have an amazing and I mean amazing time, please remember that I will put some very reasonable rules in place to keep everyone safe. I have been to this area in Guinea so many times, during upheaval and in peace. I always loved every minute. So rich, so new, every day brings new gifts, new challenges to face and overcome. And you got me and my team to help you if and when you need.
Purpose of trip: To explore another culture whos music, dance, expressions, foods, words, touch, look, sound, way of loving, is different.
Purpose of trip: To be in the presence of greatness and gentleness, to be at the feet of the grandmaster of the djembe and Malinke music. To learn how to drum, accept African teaching styles, bring our own styles of learning (that’s fine), dance other instruments.
Purpose of trip; To see and hear some amazing concerts and dances! Maybe some very special events. Worth bringing that camera. I think I said before we can pool our photos and video when we get home and share with each other if you feel so compelled. I will help.
Purpose of trip: To meet families and friends and find out about Guinean hospitality.
Purpose of trip: To find out that we can live differently and succeed at it. That it is a challenge to live in Africa. That poverty is both here in the US, Switzerland, China, Germany, etc and lives in Guinea.
Purpose of trip: To help each other when needed in ways you never thought you would. To offer your strengths and thoughts and hands when needed to a fellow student and to an African as well.
Purpose of trip: To see how different we are by seeing how much we are the same.
Purpose of trip: Learn patience and give love.
Result: You come back, you say good bye to your mates on the trip and you are left with you. You will not be the same. The longer you stay in Guinea, the more you will not feel the same. You will have much to think about and consider. You may find it difficult to share your experiences with your friends and family at first. Who would/could understand what you did there.
Suggestion: Please bring yourself for change is needed in Guinea and in the world. Also, you will be helped if you bring some type of camera, SD cards, batteries and chargers, a notebook is advised and at night or in the AM you may write about your day. HIGHLY SUGGESTED. In your later years you can look back on your journal and be amazed all over again. We will have candles. You may want to bring a few tea lights and holders for them for your room.
But I want to mention that THIS Guinea has been beaten up. Today, the president of The Gambia just said this, "The crisis has had a profound impact on millions of people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, who went hungry because they were unable to go to work, schools were closed down and thousands of children have been orphaned, many businesses shut down and farmers were unable to harvest crops, and flights were cancelled.
"The serious adverse impact of the Ebola crisis on the economic performance in the sub-region underscored the urgent need for the diversification of our economies, and the importance of monitoring and economic integration, especially trade integration in the sub-region," he added.
So by us being brave and selfishly so maybe, we can do some good while we are there. You can have as much exposure to Guinea as you want or you can try to lay low at Famoudou’s compound. I think you will seek adventure over solitude for the most part.
Late night thoughts from Alan.