Alexandra: Learned So Far

While on this trip, we have been learning a lot. We have visited many different cultures, tribes and lives. Of all of the things we have learned, I chose to talk about water, life lessons and how people are alike all over the world.

Water is a necessity of all living things on the planet. Of all of Earth’s water, only about 3% is fresh and of use to humans. Most of the fresh water is out of our reach and locked up in glaciers in Antarctica. Of all of the fresh water on the planet, a lot of it is dirty. We have witnessed people bathing, washing clothes and even drinking that water. Water is water and everyone needs it in order to survive, so they utilize the water available even if it is bad for them. Clean water is the next global problem, and we have to do something about it.

While in South Africa, we learned an important life lesson from Nelson Mandela about reconciliation. Nelson Mandela was finally let out of prison at Robben Island after thirty years of punishment for speaking his opinion and because of the color of his skin. He didn’t come out with vengeance, he came out with forgiveness. Nelson Mandela knew that retaliating would get him nowhere, instead he took initiative to try to help end apartheid. Since he didn’t fight back, he helped the problems in South Africa, but if Mandela had retaliated, it would have been very different. We learned that retaliation doesn’t get us anywhere, we actually have to do something about the problem to fix it.

People are all alike, despite their vast differences. We have been to many villages and schools around the world and all the people like the same things. In Greece, Kawaza, Jerusalem and Patakancha we played soccer with the children, all of them enjoyed it since it is their favorite things to do. Another similarity is that most of these groups of people do a lot of walking, be it from home to school, or from home to the marketplace, tribes and villages do a lot of walking. From all different corners of the Earth, people are all alike, even if they don’t look or act the same.

Already in just seven months we have learned much about the world and it’s people, especially the importance of water, learning life lessons and similarities across cultures. In the next five months, I hope to learn as much as I possibly can. Friends have been saying that there is no better way to learn, than experience. Textbooks can teach us a lot, but it takes experience to really let it soak in. We have learned much with much more to come.

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4 Responses to “Alexandra: Learned So Far”

  1. HI Alex,

    I love that you have learned so mcuh on so many different levels. I have a feeling that you are going to take charge and make some changes when you get back to Dover! I will jump on your train! XO Phyllis

  2. Kathleen Rizzo 23. Jan, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    This isn’t just to my one and only ALEX (Francis style), but to all you explorers. Because of you guys and your online journals I have started to read non-fiction books for my ELA class about Antarctica! I keep on telling people Antarctica is my foreign dream!
    Well thanks to you my knowledge has been extremely expanded!
    Love you guys and keep on enjoying your journey,
    Kathleen and the Rizzo Family

  3. Sarah Nixon (hannah's mom) 24. Jan, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    Hi Alex. I loved this post! There is a young woman from Medfield who founded the Community Water Solutions in Ghana Africa. Last spring the Medfield Fit Girls running/reading team raised over $1,000 in order to “adopt” a village and provide clean water to the families. Here is link to the blog post
    This spring the Fit Girls will again be raising funds for CWS. I would LOVE it if you and Emma could send the girls (who are in 4th and 5th grade) a special message later in the spring. I am sure it would be very inspiring!!

  4. Nice essay. The English teacher in me is proud to say that I got to spend some “teaching and learning” time with you!