Gaya Morris senegal 2010

"What matters to me most is consciousness: the awareness I have gained of worlds beyond my own, other vantage points from which to consider my life, and my role in the worldÉto act with honesty and integrity and move forward."

A call from Sebi
August 19, 2010

Its 3 pm on Sunday and I’m in my usual spot behind the terracotta table in my mom’s gallery/showroom in the South End of Boston, dabbing at little tufts of oil paint on paper plates, breathing in those thick fumes of turpentine and liquin and humming along to the fast tune Nitti Nit by Yoro Ndiaye. Keeping one eye on the occasional customer browsing amongst the Italian ceramics, another on my canvas, and my third eye on the photo of Ami Diop displayed my computer screen, its a new kind of multi-tasking. That photo is one of my favorites. Her…Read the rest »

“Hingham student reaches out to Senegal”
June 29, 2010

This article originally appeared in the Hingham Journal HERE After deciding to take off a “gap year” between high school and college last summer, Gaya Morris, a Hingham resident, recently returned from a stay in a rural village in Senegal as a participant in the Global Citizen Year Founding Fellow program. What do you think of when you hear the word “Africa”? I’ve been asking kids, elementary to high-school age, over the past few weeks. Having just returned from a seven-month stay in Senegal, West Africa, I’ve been visiting French classrooms in the Boston area, giving presentations on my experience…Read the rest »

Dear Hassane
June 10, 2010

***I wrote this blog a few weeks ago in the midst of that overly observant readjustment period and I sincerely hope some of the generalizations I have made aren’t offensive to anyone, because that’s really all they are – superficial generalizations in which you may sometimes find a grain of truth.*** Dear Hassane, Remember that day back in January or February when you asked me about America? It was during one of our Saturday English club gatherings and as usual our discussions had turned to comparing Senegal and the United States: culture, schools, values and ways of life. Life in…Read the rest »

Conclusions of many sorts
May 6, 2010

Its not the first time I’ve remarked how hellos are much more important than goodbyes for the Senegalese. There is no question that greetings are of the utmost importance – to shake the person’s hand and go through the usual series of inquiries about your friends family, health and happiness – but then its so funny how people can separate so abruptly, often without a word. Kids march into class in straight lines like little soldiers, but then pelt out in all random directions when the bell rings. My host mother will often simply hang up the phone without warning…Read the rest »

A memory
May 6, 2010

Here is a blog post I meant to post a couple weeks ago but somehow never found the chance to. I guess now you could call it a memory. My alarm rings at quarter to seven (as I am unable to prevent it from doing every single day due to the broken screen) and I jolt awake to the dim bluish light and soft shuffling beginnings of morning traffic in Dakar. The five rectangular shadows of the other fellows and their mattresses are motionless, poor Mathew still with his backpack for a pillow. Fifteen minutes later I’m dressed in yesterday’s…Read the rest »

Yama my shadow
April 19, 2010

Yama follows me absolutely everywhere. I might be in the school computer lab, out shopping at the épicerie, visiting a friend, or just out for a walk and someone will ask me ‘who’s the kid?’ I’ll suddenly remember she is there, clinging to my pinky or carrying my nalgene, or crouched over a little piece of paper she’s found drawing apples and bananas and talking to herself all the while, and say ‘oh that’s just my little sister Yama. She refuses let me go anywhere alone.’ Indeed, I usually try to convince her to stay home but it never works.…Read the rest »

Capstone Procrastination
April 10, 2010

Over the past week I’ve been coming up with all sorts of topics I could write blogs on instead of working on all the reflection essays we’ve been asked of us write, to conclude our experience and prepare for our reentry – all of them to be titled ‘capstone procrastination.’ Proof I suppose of the fact that I am in no way in conclusion-mode and still determined to be doing and learning as much as possible, despite the many hours I am now forced to spend cooped up in my room writing or typing in the computer lab. For unexpected…Read the rest »

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