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I went to the Cote d'Ivoire
(The Ivory Coast) the day after my college graduation to visit my girlfriend
Kareen Bar-Akiva who is stationed there as a volunteer of the Peace
I hadn't been on a plane since I was twelve
and I had never been to any other foreign country other than Canada.
I did not know French which is the official language of Cote d'Ivoire,
along with around 40 other recognized regional languages, but love make
us do strange and amazing things. I had the time of my life there and
saw a world few westerners get a good glimpse of. Africa is a different
world. One that seems to be straining to catch up with more industrialized
nations yet our way of the life does not suite their culture or climate.
Cote d'Ivoire is a land of contrasts.
Mainly the contrast between rich and poor. There is virtually no middle
class so one is either stinking rich or heartbreakingly poor. There
is poverty, disease, hunger but along with that there is beauty and
kindness and a simple way a life, but not an easy one. I traveled all
the way from the port city of Abidjan to Korhogo the city in the north
and along the way I saw the contrast between how the Southern city/jungle
dwellers live all the way up to the Sub-Saharan desert dwellers.
I have compiled series of photos from my trip for you to see. I wish
I had more to show you all but I had a hard enough time with being the
rich American tourist in a land so full of poverty. I have to say I
felt like I was exploiting many people with my comparative wealth and
privilege. I didn't like the feeling of sticking out like a sore thumb.
So taking pictures just didn't feel appropriate a lot of the time. I
guess I love to travel I just hate being a tourist. It's a fine line,
So enjoy the pictures and I tried to
provide some extra information like maps and links and the like because
when I was doing research for this trip I only found one
other first hand account of someone's trip to Cote d'Ivoire on the web
and that was from the early 90's. Hope this helps someone out in their
travels. Drop me a line if you have anymore questions of any kind or
just want to shoot the shit about Cote d'Ivoire.
I have to say a special thanks to my
parents, Kenneth and Suellen Slater, without them this trip would have
never been possible and I probably wouldn't have opened my eyes to that
part of the world. Thank you Mom and Dad your the best. I also need
to thank my dad again who designed the Pearl scripts that built the
photo pages. It's a really cool, simple, nice way of putting together
photo album's on the web. So thank again dad. - Love Adam.