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Returning to the Developing World

It all came back to me--the smells of dirt and sour fruit, the sights of beggars and malnourished children. They were the sights and smells of poverty, but most of all it brought back the feeling of being home. I had returned to the developing world.

I grew up overseas. I was born and lived in Kenya (East Africa) and grew up from the age of 4 in Senegal (West Africa). I have only been in the United States for 2 years, but I still haven't totally gotten used to it; I think I never will. In the United States, you're the same as everyone else; you're not really as unique as you are overseas. You're expected to fit in; if you're different, you're, in a way, rejected. But where I grew up, it's much different. You're welcomed, and you almost automatically fit in.

I may not move back overseas for another 2 years, but just the feeling of being in Haiti made me a little homesick for friends, lifestyle, and the Third World. It had been a tough move for me because of the change in cultures, and going about things was tremendous.

Haiti was a lot worse than Senegal in terms of poverty. There were many more homeless people, less food, and lots of children dressed in rags. But overall, it still reminded me of the best parts of Senegal. I spent the first 9 years of my life overseas and can't wait to move back to the sights, smells and, most of all, the feeling of being home--the feeling of being very special and unique in a foreign land.


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