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Journeying Back To Afrika

Posted By: AfricanEmpresss
Friday, 1 August 2003, Message Board

It is very true that Afrika does not need missionaries or dreamers invading the land.

One crucial problem in the "repatriation" formula is that many of those at home and those abroad have many rivers to cross before coming to a mutual ovastanding about who we all are and are relation to one another.

I can only speak from my own INsperience. No matter how many books I had read or whatever means I had used to study Afrika; nothing prepared me for what I saw, both the highs and the lows. Now I lived in west Afrika and had the glory to INsperience two different nations with two different "official" languages. Ghana and Ivory Coast. They were very contrasting INsperiences, which have many layers of Ovastanding.

We also have to throw into the discussion of our participation, the fact that our continental Afrikans have their own "demons" they are living with; some battling them and others not. That being the remnants of colonialism and new found neo-colonialism. Colonialism meaning that just as in the West, you have SOME Afrikans believing that Europeans are superior to them, European money and business is superior, etc. Many are grappling under the "Haves and Have-nots" syndrome which creates the similar diagnosis described the author of "The Miseducation of the Negro".

Likewise, you will often see many who feel that Western born Afrikans' are of the west. I confronted many feelings of anger and disbelief when told that I was the "American"; which was synonymous with "white", "have money". I was not considered "Afrikan".

To many, Afrikan stems from geological location and not from state of mind.

The wide spectrum of reactions one would receive in the various portions of Afrika is very telling but also very much depictive of historical leadership that the particular Afrikans have been exposed to. An example of which is Ivoirians of Ivory Coast, grew up French colonialism. Ivoirians had NO ovastanding of why InI grew Dreadlocks and why InI would do "That!" to InI's youths' head. Historically, those under French rule did not have much exposure to Afrocentric movements stemming from the west because of the language barrier. Rastafari lyrics/literature, civil rights, Marcus Garvey, Malcolm x etc were all in English and little of it has been translated.

In contrast, Ghana and Ghanaians appreciloved InI locks and livity and were happy to see InI, hailed InI in the streets, talked with InI openly and assuredly! Yet they grew under Kwame N'Krumah, hear and ovastand the Rastafari reasonings (English), hear and ovastand the spiritual leaders.

You know, when I sit down to try to describe what I witnessed, I feel that there are not enough words nor time, nor expressions to truly convey what I INsperienced.

I saw the worst and the best of human nature. I felt the anger of undergoing police stops for the sole purpose of seeking out a bribe. Having come from my INSperience in the states, I felt so impatient to see that InI still dealt with this bull#@%# when InI have so many RIVERS to CROSS. To see the lack of Race Consciousness was disheartening. Also to see the lack of infrastructure which would allow the police and other officers to get a steady paycheck as promised showed at least the reasons why Afrika has FAR to come. Because while you have some Afrikans living high, in very big fancy houses with maids and plenty baby sitters, you are PRETTY SURE how they got their money.

The level of "business as usual" can be very hard to adjust to when you are used to just going to an office somewhere, filling out the paperwork or application and then going home feeling assured that the paperwork or application would get to where it is going without you have to jump through any extra hoops. Whereas my Insperience in west Afrika was very much the opposite, one had to Know the cousin or uncle of which ever family member of the person who worked at the office who would expedite the process, which could otherwise take months or perhaps get lost etc. etc. This is just an example of what ones can insperience if they plan on going and setting up works or business. Just my own personal insperience.

Yet I also smile when thinking of the kindhearted bredrens and sisdrens still there:

My friends at the market who were always happy to see me, even though I was still "the American", who would watch after my youths while playing in the area, just as they would watch after their own youths.

Who would just come through with a bag of sweets for the youth. Just give them bread of whatever.

The women who would take my baby off my back and put the youth on her back and carry her for a while. Just cuz she appreciloved my youth!

The brothah who would walk miles just to get something for me, if I were in need and likewise I for them.

Who would invite InI into their homes and just sit and chat.

Or the Rasta idrens with whom InI chanted Nyabinghi pon the beach shoreline of Bassam, Ivory Coast; beating the drums all night long by the fire. The fellowship, the pure friendship (this I never insperienced in the west).

I could again go on and on and on.

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