Far From Indiana

Emily Hess - Senegal


September 26, 2010

There have been a lot of things that have gone through my mind over the past week or so that I’ve been with GCY Fellows here at IONS in California. A lot of these things I don’t know how to convey with words, but mostly, it’s been a challenge and a learning experience I have done my best to take one step at a time with. One small step at a time, every second of every day.

This is the farthest away that I have ever been from my home state of Indiana. Indiana, of course, is really not so interesting. We have a great football team ( which I know some would argue about), a pretty successful economy, a beautiful city, Indiana sand dunes, and a lot of corn. Seriously, so much corn. my apartment complex is actually smack dab in the middle of a corn field. But Indianapolis, as boring as it is sometimes, has always been my home, and this adventure I’m about to go on is the greatest challenge I think I have ever voluntarily put myself through. And I’m so excited. I have never been through anything like this in my life and as much as I anticipate it, I can’t even fathom what it will really be like when the plane lands in Dakar, Senegal and I eagerly step off, awaiting my new life and my new place to call home. Because as much as I miss good ol’ corn, nothing in Indiana can prepare or has prepared me for this journey.

All I can say is that I’m glad I came here first, though. Even if this has been the longest, most anticipated week of my life, round of applause for the GCY staff doing the best they can to prepare me for the life I will lead in a completely new atmosphere, while still making room for a little bit of fun among strangers.

Emily Hess