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Sunday, January 16, 2011

Pre-travel preface.

"Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends." -Maya Angelou

Call me crazy, (as I often do, myself) but I'm starting to pack to go on a 4.5 month adventure. Please wonder, (as I often do, myself) how I am going to fit everything into approximately 2 suitcases.  Guess that's part of the reason I've been putting off packing for so long.

Jonathan just left for France, and Jed just left to head back to his place after we were all together for his birthday.  I'm quickly reminded that I'm once again the "only child" until I leave, and I am also reminded just how much that sucks.  Sorry mom and dad, but its quite boring here.   Maybe that's part of the reason I'm finally starting to pack.

I'm headed to Ghana, Africa.  Why not?  I'll spend 131 days in the "armpit" of the continent of Africa attending the University of Ghana - Legon; attempting to shove off my own greenness of the world.  I fly there and back alone and I know approximately one other person that is going.  Ergo, I call this an adventure.  

I'm leaving beautiful friends and family and my dog behind.  They will surely be missed, but they didn't quite make the cut ;)  I will fly to Toronto, then Frankfurt, then finally to Accra, Ghana.

My mother asked me what time I will arrive in Toledo.  She meant to say Toronto, but it didn't come out that way.  Then the thought crossed my mind, "How horribly anti-climactic it would be if I end up in Ohio."

I've had about 8 shots in preparation, and I'm on anti-malarial drugs already.  With passports and visas and fees and medical priming and plenty of other headaches, I can't wait to get going.

If you can keep up, check back to keep updated on my escapades.  Hopefully I'll inspire you.


  1. touching. i hope your flight goes well! and i hope the rest of the trip is awesome and fun :)

  2. oh miriam, i love you and you are an inspiration to me! i wish you safe travels (hopefully farther away then ohio!) and you will be on my mind often while you are away! can't wait to hear about your crazy adventures!

    love always,
    roz :)

  3. When I read the first entry, I was reminded of my mother's perspective at age 98: "Boring isn't bad. It means no one in my family is sick, or hurting, etc.".
    We pray for safe travels ("travelling mercies") and a great experience during the entire semester abroad. Godspeed! All of our love, Dad

  4. My dear Miriam, I can't you are old enough to trips across the Atlantic and onto the continent of Africa. Be brave and experience all you can, eat their food, try and learn some of their language, share in their customs. Oh yes, and don't forget to study. Remember God loves you and we are trying. Have a wonderful time! Love,T&J

  5. As I type this, you are on your way to begin a great adventure! Godspeed!! My 4th graders followed Jonathan across the USA, so now a new bunch will follow you across an ocean. Experience all you can-within reason and sensibility! It is exciting to think that you will meet some amazing people that will change your life forever! Make it count! Can't wait to read that you have arrived safely.

  6. Good luck Miriam. I am very excited for you.
    Have fun I am jealous of your vision and nerve.
    Jim Z

  7. So happy for you, Miriam, launching a global adventure. Our son, DJ (whom you've never met, I think), spent his college semester in Indonesia. All his friends were going to Europe. He thought "I can go there any time." And he has. He's had the global wanderlust ever since, including extensive travel in Africa. And I've made a couple of wonderful trips with him to Kenya, Australia & New Zealand. I hope it becomes an important part of your life as well. I'm signing up as a Follower of your blog.......looking forward to it. I'll keep Paige and Blake advised of your stories....

    Travel safe,
    Your mom's MN cuzin, Papa Hans!

  8. Jean talked with Miriam yesterday for almost 1/2 an hour. Things are going well. Miriam needs to buy a router before she can e-mail, skype, and blog. She registers for classes this week, and classes will start next week. It's hot, dry, and humid. Student population at the U of G is @39,000. Oops, whose blog is this? Later,

  9. Grandma and I read your blog together on her computer. We're excited that you will learn things you wouldn't learn over here. Enjoy new friendships and be safe-Send mom your address so she can write you a letter. She prefers that to the computer!! Love, Mary and Grandma

  10. Another week has gone by without an internet hook-up for Miriam. She called on Sunday and seems to be doing well. She was able to buy a modem, but it wasn't working yet. Perhaps in a few more days, we'll see her next post.