And now for something completely different…

By Victoria Jones, Head Librarian, Middle & Upper School

elephantsAs the students at Heritage finished summer school, I began to prepare for a trip to Kenya to visit Maasai Mara National Park.  As the date for my departure to Kenya approached, I found that I had very mixed feelings.  While I have always wanted to go on safari, there was still a huge amount of work to be done for the library at school and summer break was a good time to get it done.  There was also a vague, bitter aftertaste every time I said the word “safari”, a term that somehow seems to harken back to an ugly colonial past in Africa.  Most importantly, it seemed wrong to be taking such an extravagant trip when I was surrounded by people in such challenging circumstances.  So with a conflicted heart, I headed to Kenya.

Below are some of the pictures from my trip.  It was an extraordinary experience that I will always remember and cherish, yet my unease remains.  At the heart of the matter, seems to be the question of who I want to be in the world: a passive tourist or an active participant.  As with much of what I have experienced on my sabbatical, it is complicated and I have few answers.

giraffe

lion lion2 sunset

About Westtown School

Westtown School is a Pre-K through 12th grade Quaker, coed, college preparatory day and boarding school in West Chester, PA.
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One Response to And now for something completely different…

  1. marion dear says:

    Dear Victoria,
    What a great post! I understand your passive tourist vs. active participant dilemma. I have seen first hand your hard work at the Heritage library, and rest assured you are most definitely an active participant! Fall is arriving here, and it is cold in the morning. This might sound delightful, but it make s me miss the equator.
    Take care!
    When will you venture back to Westtown?
    Marion

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