Archive for the ‘travel’ Category

Solving Africa, by Junior Kanu

December 11, 2008

The notion that a single man could actually “solve” Africa might seem unrealistic and, indeed, audacious. But you have got to respect the ambition, the ideals, and the sense of purpose of Junior Kanu, a 23 yr old Nigerian who will be graduating from the NYU journalism program this Friday and already has plans to spend the first part of 2009 traveling around the world’s oldest continent, capturing the dreams of young Africans he meets along the way and conflating these narratives into a book he intends to title, “Solving Africa.”

I have had the pleasure of talking with Jr. via email for the past few days and afterward offered to do whatever I could to support his project. In that light, I would encourage anyone interested in helping Africa’s Cheetah Generation develop their continent to please checkout the Solving Africa website and join the Solving Africa Facebook group.

Although Junior and I seem to be on opposite trajectories, him traveling to Africa and me going back to the States, I hope to keep in touch with him and watch his journey. I encourage you all to do the same.

-J. K. Wade


Tourist vs. Visitor

July 30, 2008

I have been discussing, with my aunt, the differences between being a tourist and being a visitor. I have enjoyed being a visitor much more than being a tourist.

As a visitor, I have reconnected with old friends, engaged in deep conversations with family members, and met new, interesting friends who were introduced to me by the person I was staying with. As a tourist, I have asked random people on the street to take a picture of me with a landmak in the background, but have otherwise kept to myself.

As a visitor, I saved money on lodging by sleeping on my friend’s couch and cooking in her kitchen. As a tourist, I spent money paying for a hostel and eating out every night.

As a visitor, I knew exactly what cafe to go to for the best service and best coffee in Vienna. As a tourist, I was forced to pick an over-priced, under-quality restaurant at random because it was near by.

As a visitor, I have had free and unlimited access to internet to stay in touch with friends and keep up with my blog. As a toursit, I have had to pay for internet access in an overpriced, overly hip cafe.

I have been lucky enough to stay with friends or friends of friends in all but one of the cities I have visited and I am thankful for that. In the future I hope to be a perpetual visitor and infrequent tourist.

I’m outta here…

January 11, 2008

Friends, family, mentors, & kin folk,

On Saturday, January 12th, I left the USA, my home for the last 23 years, for the beautiful and proud Republic of Ghana. For the next 6 months I will be living in Accra, Ghana and will be employed by the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) as a Teaching Fellow. MEST is a part of the Meltwater Foundation, which is a subsidiary of the Meltwater Group, which is a Norwegian-based business software company with offices across the world. Meltwater has two core competencies: 1) World-class software development, and 2) the development of high-potential young people into business leaders and, through MEST, it plans to use these competencies to develop the future technology leaders of Africa. You can learn more about Meltwater and MEST at and I will elaborate on MEST’s approach to training technology leaders in Africa in later posts, but I first want to get to the reason for this post.

I am in Ghana now and while I look around at the new and interesting things and people surrounding me, I am struck by the incredible amount of time, energy, love, support, encouragement, anguish, and sacrifice it has taken to get me here, and although I am embarking on this journey alone, I take with me the lessons so many of my friends, family, loved ones, and mentors, (and even enemies) have taught me. I don’t have much time here to get into the specifics (I have breakfast with the team in a few minutes), but I did want my first posting to stand as a letter of appreciation to all of the people who made it possible for me to succeed in my sports and academics in Tucson, attend a world-class university, graduate from said university, and now travel across the Atlantic to educate myself and others in Africa. I am eternally grateful to all of you and love you all. Thank you.

…more posts to come once I get settled and find a converter for all of my American electronics (including this laptop).

-Jareau Kenneth Wade