It amazes me how easy it was to transition back into the everyday routines here at home. I thought that I would be saying “jambo” instead of “hello”, or “asante” instead of “thank you” more often. Having been in Tanzania felt like a dream. I still cannot believe all that we did in the short amount of time we were there. The weekend excursions- Serengeti safari, Ngorongoro Crater, Mama Ana’s, Mt. Kilimanjaro and Arusha National Park- were all things that will probably be a once in a lifetime experience for me, and I am so incredibly grateful that I had the opportunity to do it.
The people that I met in Tanzania are probably what will have the longest lasting impression for me. Everywhere I went, everyone I met was friendly and welcoming. I had no problem walking and talking with a stranger for five blocks, or going into a random shop to see what they had to sell. They all helped me with my Swahili and taught me about Tanzania. One man, while selling me a bracelet, made sure I knew what each color of the Tanzania flag meant before letting me purchase the bracelet. Also, my students will always hold a place in my heart. Saying goodbye to them was one of the hardest things. They helped strengthen me as a teacher and for that I will always be grateful.
It still blows my mind that this trip even happened. My photos and words to describe Tanzania and studying abroad do not do it justice. The beauty of Tanzania cannot be captured in a picture. When asked, “How was your trip?” I simply say, “It was amazing.” because nothing else can explain it. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I was so fortunate to be a part of. As a future teacher, I am grateful for the life lessons I can apply to my classroom. Thank you to everyone that made this trip a possibility- especially Professor Lisa Kasmer! (: