Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Africa Says, by Carl Phillips

Hi guys!
Today in poetry class, we read a poem about preconceptions in Africa, and I thought it would apply to my trip really well so I wanted to copy it down here:

Before you arrive, forget
the landscape the novels are filled with,
the dull retro-colonial glamour
of the British Sudan, Tunis's babble,
the Fat Man, Fez, the avenue taht is Khartoum.
Forget the three words you know of this continent: bakara, baksheesh,
assassin, words like chipped knives thurst
into an isolation of sand and night.
These will only get you so far.

In the dream of the first night,
Africa may seem just another body to
sleep with, a place where you can lay
you own broken equipment to rest.
You have leisure to wander at her being
a woman, at your being disappointed
with this. You come around to asking
what became of her other four fingers,
how she operates on six alone.
you wipe the sweat from
your chest with her withered hand, raised
and two-fingered; observe, as she sleeps,
how that hand casts the perfect
jackal on a wall whose color
is the same as that of the country

itself, a dark, unpalatable thing who
uses a bulbed twig to paint her lids
in three parallel zones taht meet and
kiss one another. She smells of henna or
attar, or rises steeped in musk that in other
women does not stray from between the legs.
She says she has no desire to return
with you. Don't be surprised if
she takes nothing you offer, and moves
on bare feet away from you, or if
you wake feelign close to something,
the gauze damp and loose on your face.

And should you choose to leave, know better
than to give this city a farewell sweep of
the eye. To the pich-helmeted mosques, the slim
and purposeless boulevardiers, the running
sores at the breasts of the women who beg
for stalled trains, you were never here.
For this reason, you may decide to stay put,
thinking you have left nothing finished.
You may have an urge
to make each move coung.
You may have learned nothing at all.

Heh, this poem resonated with me. Sounds like I'm gonna have a wonderful time in Africa, yah? Anyhoo, I received a small description of what the highschool track(s) for senior year is like, and I can't decide which one I want to do! EEK!!! I still have some time, though, so it should all be good.
*AHEM* Going into 11th or 12th grades:
For students who will be placed in the 11th or 12th grades in Mali, there are four courses of study to choose from:
Human Sciences: main subjects are Philosophy, History and Geography, minor subjects are English, Math, Physics and Chemistry.
Bio Sciences: main subjects are Biology (duh) Physics and Chemistry, minor subjects are French, English, History and Geography, and Philosphy (I think I would take some of these minor subjects not all)
Exact Sciences: major subjects are Math, Physics, and Chemistry, minor subjects are English, French, History, and Geography
Language and Literature: major subjects are Literature (suprise surprise) French Grammar, and English, minor subjects are Math, Physics, History and Geography, and Philosophy.

Apperently, major subjects get more hours per week, as well as higher credit. Also most 12th graders will be studying for the Bacculaureate which probably means less chilling, but I guess its a good thing because I will have college apps to complete :/

As for my subjects of interest, I want to take Math, Physics, and Philosophy (possibly french grammar, because I could use the help). But there is no such track with all those subjects as major subjects :( I guess I will just have to compromise *Sigh*

Anyhoo, I am getting tired, so I will go to bed now
Bonne Nuit!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

WaDC (May) Pics!!!

Photo creds to Khyree!!!

 At the aiport; this is the Seattle half of the family!!!!
 The entire family united! <3 Thursday night at TGIF (IT WAS NOT FRIDAY!!!!!)Met the ambassador of Kenya (Shwagin' Wagon)
This was our last day (Sunday, a.k.a today) Wonderful group, terribly wonderful :)

And these photos were taken by Keven from Global Kids :D

Mad Excited For Dis Hella Filthy Kenya Trip (I Love New York, too)

So this weekend, I was in the Capital of the US of A, preparing for my KENYA trip <3 I met 10 New Yorkers, and got mad close to my Seattle group. And I have to say, I'm in love with every single last person going to Kenya. They're all really friendly, sweet, funny, and just plain amazing. 27 days in Kenya? Please, its going to be a party :D
For those of you who are interested (and for those of you who aren't :P), my schedule in DC was crazy, but very fun too :) We left for DC on Wednesday at 11:30 pm and arrived at our hotel around 11:00am on Thursday (forgive me if I'm wrong) A couple of hours later, we met our New York counterpart (yay) and had dinner at TGIF (it was Thursday NOT friday, which kinda upset me, but oh well) Went to bed mad late, and woke up on Friday for a hectic day. FIRST, we met up with the Foreign Affairs Committee, specifically, the subcommittee on Africa (I know you know you're jealous) THEN, we met up with the Kenya Ambassador for the United States and the United States Ambassador for Kenya. They were really down to earth and terribly friendly. We ran late, so we skipped lunch at World Bank, although we met several employees there. Finally, we met with some staff from the Department of State. We had pizza for dinner, and a mad pool party. (SOOOO MUCH FUN I LOVE ME SOME NEW YORKERS)
On Saturday, we had a bunch of technology Training seccions, and we learned about creating advertisements, being culturaly competent, globalization, and more mind blowing topics :/ We ate dinner at the union station, and celebrated Ikram's prom because she missed her prom to come learn with us (SNAPS TO THAT) ooph thats about it, sunday we recapped a bit, and then we traveled home <3
This blog's shout out goes to 3 people: Khyree Smith (my big bro, even though he's younger than me >:[ ) Dre Ware, my oh so lovely twinnie <3 and Tyler Ware, who got stuck being my cousin (but deep down inside he loves me :] ) Unfortunately, I left my camera at home, which means I didn't take any pics D: but I think Nicollette took a bunch, so if its okay with her, I'll post them up as soon as she posts them up, I will too (and I will give her MAD photo creds :l] )
AIYOOOO (fellow betans, is that how you spell it?) a.k.a BYEEEEEEEEEE <3

Saturday, May 7, 2011

I love Natalie Zyfers, because she is Yummy...AND SO IS KENYA!!!

Hi guys :)
I thought I'd spice things up by concentrating on Kenya today, because I got new pictures about the college we'd be staying at :D

Isn't the campus so pretty? We'll be staying in their dorms for the entire months, although we'll be doing homestays for two weekends! In Kenya, I will help college students create ads that promote being good citizens, as well as learn Swahili (Hakuna Matata <3) and go on Safaris!  As you guys can see, this week's shout out goes to miss Natalie Zyfers, because she requested one. So she gets gold stars too, because she made me feel special :D (HINT HINT GUYS I TAKE REQUESTS hehe) I think that next week, I shall upload pictures of Bamako!
P.S Natalie? Can we run through the halls belting songs again?? I miss doing that with you :3