My love for Africa Hello everyone my name is Tulsi Amin and I attend South University at the West Palm Beach Campus in Florida. I have been to many different places in my life and in fact I have stayed in three different continents as of now. I was born in India moved to Kenya when I was two and final destination is America since the age of 10. Africa is where I consider my childhood where I learned to play with butterflies saw talking parrots and was visited by wild monkeys frequently in my courtyard.
With my experiences with people in the Western world and their depiction of Africa being like the “Jungle Book” I wish I can take them all there to see the reality of this beautiful continent. I lived in Nairobi, Kenya the capital city of that country. There are no lions, tigers or giraffes on the street as I have heard many people ask me. We do have high rise buildings, malls, public transportation and homes built out of brick. Although I lived there from the age of two to eight I remember many things that are very special to me today.
I remember having an aunt that lived in a town called Thompson Falls that was on the Equator and the weather was always perfect there. I used to go there many summers and go down waterfalls and see huge hippos basting in the river. I met the local tribes that are called Masais and learned to make tribal necklaces out of gemstones. Africa is a country that is full of culture and having been lived there has made me appreciate many things in life that are scarce resources that we take for granted elsewhere.
When I moved to America in 1993 and started school in New Jersey I was so excited when I saw a few black students in my class. I went up to them and started speaking in Swahili and they looked at me and replied “I am sorry we are not Indian” So I told them no this is your language. All the students looked at me and said our language is English. That’s when I learned that African Americans do not speak Swahili the native language of Kenya. As I learned more about history and slavery and saw how many African Americans lost their roots to their homeland it was a rude awakening for me.
I am glad that this is a rich part of my life and will always be a special place for me. Although many people got a colorful depiction of Africa and the safaris through Disney’s Lion King the real safari is even more exciting to see. I do remember traveling to other smaller towns that were on the outskirts on our way we would zebras grazing in this vast open green land. Many times we have seen giraffes, antelopes and elephants just enjoying their natural habitat. These memories and sightings are something that I will never forget.
I love that country and am delighted that it is part of my life. I will love sharing these memories with my children and hoping to take them one day to see Kenya, Africa. Over the years I thought how I may make people appreciate other countries and their culture. America is known as the “melting pot” where many different cultures come to make a living yet are we so ignorant to learn about all these cultures. As a child when I attended school I was taught about all major religions and how to respect others and their beliefs.
As they say education and manners are taught young and school is where this appreciation for other cultures should be taught. Modern day education needs to implement the positive aspects of the other countries such as teaching students about their culture, economy, what these countries are famous for. I learned about slavery which is a big part of part history but now it is time to teach and appreciate where the slaves came from. They left their roots so far behind that many of them do not know where they came from in Africa.
We live in a modern day world where everyone around us comes from different backgrounds, values and beliefs. We all have special meaning for the places where we come from and I think we deserve for others to respect these places. There are problems everywhere but despite them when they place is special to any one of us we tend to overlook the problems. We need to have an open mind and room to explore and learn about other countries and cultures.