I look back at the last three months as a very special period of time. I met amazing people and saw beautiful places. I gained fourteen new family members and made new friends. I learned a lot about community, the meaning and value of culture and about development. I had a wonderful time, and now it is almost time to go home.
I find myself thinking a lot about what would have happened if I didn’t go on this gap year semester with Where There Be Dragons, or if I had not taken a gap year at all. Had that happened, I would still be living in the protective bubble of my town, would not have seen all the things I saw and I would not have met all the amazing people that are now my family and friends. I am unbelievably happy and grateful that I got the opportunity to see and experience Madagascar and Senegal the way I did with this semester program.
It will be strange when I get home. I am exited to see my family and friends, that I have never been away from for so long, and to share all my experiences. But at the same time I’m nervous that I won’t be able to truly convey my experience when I show them all the pictures I took, tell them all about my adventures and about what I’ve learned.
By going home I am not only leaving Senegal, but I am also leaving this amazing adventure. And even though I will never forget the past three months, as soon as I am home it will all turn into a memory. Scary, but unavoidable.
‘You get a strange feeling when you’re about to leave a place, like you’ll not only miss the people you love but you’ll miss the person you are now in this time and place, because you will never be this way ever again.’ – Azar Nafasi