Thursday, December 1, 2011

Alhamdulilaay!

As a part of my France semester program, we spent a week in French-speaking West Africa : Senegal!!! It was my first time being in Africa, in a developing country, into the Global South... and it was incredible.
So many beautiful things and places to see.
Baobab Trees, practically the national symbol of Senegal.
Traditionally prepared meals, eaten with our hands (did that each night with my host family)
Incredible, arabesque mosques -- this one in Touba being the largest in Sub-Saharan and Western Africa.
New perspectives on religion, beauty, respect, living...




Beautiful people to meet, with spirits and smiles that can't be justified in photos.


10 crazy Americans in Africa.
It was unbearably intriguing to discover which aspects of globalization have been integrated into their culture, and which others are still retained in tradition.  Smoking fish on the beach with wood chips and dried grass, for example, is still done as it was in the beginning.
The end of the week we moved from Dakar (the capital), to farther down the Atlantic Coast to a hotel-resort at Toubab Dialaw.
And yeah, we found paradise :)
And magnificent animals during a safari on the last morning
And the fruit of the Baobab Tree (below)!!!  The refer to it as "monkey's bread", and you crack the giant pod open and pull out this chalky, white morsels that tasted like sour apple... and it made incredible juice.


That's the briefest summary I could supply; I know these photos don't cover up the fact that I have been an atrocious blogger, but I work in cycles :B.  I'm sad to report that I have only 2 week left in France, so be prepared for the nostalgia updates and more photos I never added during my disgustingly long winter break.  I hope you all had a lovely holiday, and talk to you soon!!!


with peace & love,
nicole

8 comments:

▲my• said...

This is so fantastic! Just, SO FANTASTIC.

Olive said...

Girl, I applaud you for the amount of updating that you do give us! You must be so busy, and when you're relaxing, who wants to break free of the bliss to sit in front of a screen? I love all of the photos here, you're making me long to be on the plane to Ecuador already. It looks so beautiful in Senegal. So you did get to travel to a developing country :), that's awesome! I love all of your France photos and posts, but it's also really interesting to see the language criss-crossed with a place like Africa. The ocean and the mosques are gorgeous, and I'm digging your culture-appropriate attire. I just think it's awesome how immersed you've gotten into the cultures, you're definitely not a "tourist." The photos of the African kids are SO CUTE. I can't wait to read more about your journeys in France, Spain, and EVERYTHING! I'm so excited for you and the amazing times you are having :)! Keep the good times rolling these next two weeks Nicole!

♥ Olive

Joyce said...

sounds like a really great program to be in! so awesome how you got to visit africa :D looks like a really rewarding and amazing/fun experience to have. the pics of the animals look so adorable hehe. keep in touch <3

-Joyce
www.carouselstreet.com

Maxwell said...

Dude! That trip looks super awesome. I'm kinda jealous of that right now...

Natalie said...

I mean... seriously, I don't even know how to comment on this! I've been creeping on your Facebook pictures too, and it really just looks like you are having the most amazing time of your life. EVERYTHING LOOKS AMAZING. I am so happy that you are having all of these fantastic adventures. :D

Jen N. said...

ah nicole these pictures are spectacular! i know i got to see you on sunday but i cannot wait to hangout again and actually hear about all of this. seriously. i want to hear all the details. so we gotta see eachother soon. maybe for breakfast or late dinner ???? :)

Joyce said...

beautiful pictures! looks like a resort hehe. the views are really breathtaking! <3

-Joyce
www.carouselstreet.com

Allison said...

I LOVE these posts, my dear friend! I've been slacking on commenting, but have been keeping up with your fabulous adventures.
Isn't Africa such a tremendous place?! I miss it so much - especially the beautiful people that you meet. The pictures could not be more gorgeous - you're a pro with the camera, girl! xox