Winding Down

Well here it is. My last day in Ghana. I blinked and it was over and at the same time I can’t get home soon enough.

The rest of my group left yesterday, which means last night and today I’ve been on my own. It’s a nice book-end, actually, beginning and ending this trip without travel companions. Now, I would have taken a flight out last night if I could have, but still, I appreciate the symmetry of it.

I don’t know what I expected from this trip–I mean, I was here for work and not some kind of white bohemian sprit quest. But still, I’m leaving changed. It would be impossible not to.

I started the re-entry process back to American life last night and it’s funny what pops up and what falls away. The usual gnats of existence managed to converge, those people and events driven by insecurity, doubt and fear. In fact, it was kind of reassuring in a weird way to have it happen, like a nice reminder that the more things change the more they stay the same in many ways. I’ll tell you what though, this year with Olive, topped off with this trip to Africa has been a gift in terms of not letting that kind of garbage stick around.

I don’t leave until late tonight, and then I travel basically all day tomorrow. I’m still holding my breath on the exit. Last night I was having dinner with three of the other writers on the trip, all leaving for Europe that night when they got a message their flight had been bumped up and was leaving in an hour. An hour. To get checked in through customs and on a plane from our hotel. In Africa. This is the kind of stuff that has happened here–ridiculous, comical, but unnerving nonetheless. It’s been fun but I’m ready to come home.

Hope to have some time to blog some more on the return trip home, otherwise I’ll pepper the stories as we race through the holidays and into a new year. 2011 has not been dull, that is for sure.

For those of you who have sent me messages along the way, thanks. Really. It’s an odd thing feeling so far away yet totally connected, and they have helped bridge that gap immensely. I’m leaving Ghana not knowing if my time here accomplished anything for anyone but myself. I hope so, but really, how could that be measured?

One last shot before I go for a bit and until I can get the others off my camera. Enjoy!

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