The Unexpected Destination

Khadim Sarr - Senegal


September 5, 2018

    
Here I am, writing my first post from the balcony of a hotel close to the beach in Senegal.
Ecuador was supposed to be my original destination where I had made the peace of my mind which is to immerse myself completely in its culture and its language. I had listened to its songs, researched about its foods, just to familiarize myself with the context before going to be there. However, due to unnecessary bureaucracy, I am unable to receive a visa as a volunteer to Ecuador and had to be given my second choice a thought once again which is Senegal.
This country is in a way beautiful in its own customs and language. It is a muslim majority nation but preaches itself as a secular state, in case for those who are unfamiliar with the term, Secular means no official association to any religion or irreligion. The greetings are fascinating. They are Salaamalaikum and people will respond to you back as Malaikum Salaam or you could say Jam Rek which means peace within you and peace within me. I am a supporter of peace of myself and that is why I have come to respect this particular act. Moreover, the country declares religious freedom to be protected by law resulting in the most religiously peaceful nation in perhaps the whole wide world.
In just a little over three days after arrivals, I have learnt and seen quite a lot. People are active and healthy and quite tall. Fish is their favoritism and exercise is done by running. They dress in style with multitudes of colors and honestly, I would very much like to buy a pair of pants that they are wearing because they look darningly attractive.
So far what I have learnt is that religion has played a huge part in shaping this nation today starting from its people, its look, its manner, its politics and many other immeasurable parts of life. Its acceptance of diversity is clearly something I have come to respect so far about this nation.
Donate to my fundraising campaign to fulfill a high school student’s wish with a dream like me to take a gap year by immersing themselves completely in one culture.

 

Khadim Sarr