Moving On: To The Gambia

Another chapter ends, another begins. Two months in Ghana, two months of working and seeing, of looking back on what we’ve seen, looking around at West Africa . . . and of looking ahead, to the fast approaching end of our epic honeymoon, over one year of continuous travel. But not so fast! Because the next stop, The Gambia, promises to be one of the most intense, emotionally-charged stops of our journey.

There are several layers to it: Tay returning to the site of her life-changing Peace Corps experience, the upcountry Gambian village of Sarakunda, with which she has had zero contact since climbing onto that final bush taxi more than eight years ago. There is this, her arriving out of the blue with gifts for her adopted father, the Muslim chief of the village, and his four wives (Tay’s mothers), and the rest of the family, including the children she delivered by moonlight — her first experience with childbirth and nursing…

Then there is me, seeing with my own eyes how utterly different was her Peace Corps experience from mine in Nicaragua. When she joined (in 1996) she thought she might meet her husband in the Peace Corps. Well it didn’t happen quite like that, though it kind of did, years later in a more indirect fasion. And barring her first idea, she always dreamed with her PC girlfriends about bringing her husband back to see Sarakunda.

Through all of this, for Tay, will be the flood of memories, the people, the sights, so many stimuli triggering so many lost memories and feelings. For me, there will be the sharing of this with my partner, as well as the newness, the excitement of travel which may occasionally make me weary, but which never grows old.

There will also be minimal Internet connectability, so bear with us, and we’ll see you shortly down the road.

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