Page 2 of Skyfire24x Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Granada October 28th 2009

For a long time I've had absolutely no desire to go to Europe. So it's surprising to me that I'm now in Spain for the second time this year. How on earth did I get here? Two days ago ... 3:30 AM - Leave Bamako with about 10 other volunteers 8:00 AM - Get to Casablanca; Take fellow volunteer Julie to the train station to meet up with my friend Zak in Rabat; "Your mother is looking for you!" -- Police officer at Casablanca Airport 9:00 AM - Try to get back into airport to make my connecting flight: "You're coming from Bamako ... you lived in Guinea ... you speak some Arabic ... and you're American? I'm sorry but that's a little weird." -- Royal Air Maroc ticketing agent 12:00 PM - Leave Morocco 3:00 ... read more
First thing we did when we got off the plane.
Rosie's Apartment

Africa » Mali » District of Bamako » Bamako October 26th 2009

The following are exerts of emails that I sent out during my time in Mali. October 9, 2009 "Ok, so here's the deal. Yesterday I left Guinea. We can't say we were evacuated, but that's what happened. I'm currently just outside of Bamako. I'll be here for 2-4 weeks. It doesn't look like we'll be allowed to go back to Guinea. But there's no final word yet. You may be seeing me really soon. I don't know what to do. There are some people applying for transfers, but they're all for a minimum of a year. Morocco is out of the question. (They said no.) Transfering seems really daunting, but so does the US." "So, Peace Corps Guinea was evacuated yesterday. I'm in Bamako, Mali now. If we aren't allowed to go back to Guinea, I ... read more
Bamako Airport

Africa » Guinea » Labé September 28th 2009

Disclaimer: The contents of this page, and all links appearing on this page, do not represent the positions, views or intents of the U.S. Government, United States Peace Corps or Peace Corps Guinea. Kindly do not republish anything found on these pages without explicit permission of the author. I wake up at 7:30. I rush out of bed. I have to meet someone at 8. I quickly get dressed and run up to the roof of the Peace Corps office. I begin praying the morning service of Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement. The guard tells me later it's the first time he's ever seen a volunteer pray. I sneak glances into the courtyards of my neighbors. Women are getting water from wells. Men are in front of their houses brushing their teeth. Everything is ... read more

Africa » Morocco » Rabat-Salé-Zemmour-Zaer » Rabat August 24th 2009

Saturday around 6 PM I said good-bye to my Dad and hopped the train to the Barcelona airport. My flight with Royal Air Maroc (Royal Moroccan Airlines), was scheduled to leave around 9 PM. However when I checked in they told me the flight was delayed an hour. After I got through security, I saw on the monitors that I was now leaving around 11 PM. After grabbing something to eat, the little TVs now said around midnight. Turns out the RAM pilots had gone on strike. I was told to wait it out. By midnight, I'd made good friends with the other three non-Moroccans on the flight: two guys from Bamako and one from Dakar. We hung out in the terminal, listening to techno music from the cafe, until 4 in the morning when the ... read more
The Boys & Me

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona August 21st 2009

After getting the last seat on two different flights, I arrived in Barcelona on Sunday. My baggage didn't quite make it, but I didn't expect to make it myself let alone my bag, so no big loss. My Dad got here a couple hours later and together we took the train into the city. We headed to our simple but gorgeous hotel. One it's most attractive features is that it is right in the middle of Las Ramblas, the main tourist/strolling boulevard ... and right across the street from one of the largest markets. Food. What a great idea. :) I'm eating a lot of American food here, but don't judge me, it's counts as foreign food to me now. There are so many tourists here, it's ridiculous. Barcelona is the #10 most visited city in ... read more
More Gaudí
FC Barcelona - Join Us!
Okupa y Resiste

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona August 20th 2009

I know, I know ... what the heck am I doing in Spain? Three weeks ago my Dad managed to call me (it is possible!) and informed that I'd be meeting him in Barcelona on the 16th. Why Barcelona? The Catalonian capital was chosen to host the 33rd World Convention of Narcotics Anonymous (WCNA). So here we are, along with about 5000-7000 NA fellows. So this week, thousands of recovering addicts from across the globe flooded the streets of Barcelona. While a majority of the group came from the United States, where NA began, every continent is represented. People came from Japan, New Zealand, Iran, Israel, Egypt, South Africa, Morocco, Sweden, Turkey, Argentina, Mexico, and everywhere in between. I'm pretty sure I was the only person coming from West Africa, but I found out that there ... read more
Community Publicity
Barcelona International Convention Center (CCIB)

Africa » Guinea » Labé July 17th 2009

The rainy season is finally here! There's no more school, so all the college and high school students come back to the village for the vacation. No more ridiculously hot weather. And my favorite, no more relying on a well 15 minutes away for all my water. Now it's delivered to me, straight off my roof. :) Far from being a vacation time, everyone is working more than usual. Practically everyone is in the fields most if not all of the day planting corn, rice, peanuts, cassava, sweet potatoes, and okra. All of this is done by hand, the only assistance being that of a hoe. Even I'm working more than usual. Because everyone's out of school, when they're not planting they want to learn English. So I've been having about three private lessons a day ... read more
Aissata & Adama Keita
The Boys

Africa » Guinea » Labé July 3rd 2009

Ok kids, here's the deal. I'm still hanging out in Guinea (18 months down, 8 to go). A year ago I started fundraising through Peace Corps to renovate the elementary school in my village. This thing was built by the French, back in the day when colonization was still in style. In the 50+ years since then, no repairs have been made. So basically, it looks like a bomb hit it. If it were in the US, it would be demolished as a public health risk. But this is Guinea. So the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders have class there. Cool, right? So. My commnunity asked Peace corps for help. Around $8000 worth of help. Through a series of small miracles, a little less than $2000 actually came through. With that money, we took off what ... read more
"Petit a Petit"

Africa » Senegal » Cape Verde Peninsula » Dakar May 22nd 2009

Due to the lack of appropriate medical facilities in Guinea, I've been whisked away to Senegal for my mid-service check up. Despite all the fun forms and doctor visits, I'm choosing to see this as a second vacation. First things first, the moment I got off the plane, I was greeted by sliding glass doors. I'm travelling with another volunteer from Guinea and we took this as a sign that Dakar would be a little different than what we were use to in Conakry. The customs officials immediately inferred that we were Peace Corps volunteers and started speaking to us in Wolof (the predominantly spoken local language in Senegal). We apologized in French, saying we didn't understand. But apparently Peace Corps is very well known here, and has a great reputation because this didn't really bother ... read more
Dakar Skyline
The House of Slaves

Oceans and Seas » Atlantic April 17th 2009

After three weeks and four cities, I'm headed back to Guinea. Of course there are a few speed bumps and pit stops along the way. When I got to the airport, they told me I was two days late for my flight and out of luck. As person after person failed to find me in the system, I calculated all the money I had on me (even in Guinean Francs) and wondered if it would be enough to buy another ticket. I was fully prepared to bargain for a lower price. Fortunately, before I could use my African market skills on an international airline, they figured out why I had showed up two days later than originally scheduled (my connecting flight to Conakry had been cancelled. Apparently Guinea doesn't merit two flights a week anymore.) The ... read more
Royal Air Maroc

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