Preparing to travel to sub-Saharan Africa brings a host of health requirements and recommendations. Western clinics respond by offering us vaccines and pills and sprays and solutions and nets. Three sets of vials are on the counter in this photo: Meningitis, Polio and Yellow Fever. A few dollars, a few needles and a few minutes later, I’m protected from diseases – more than 10 in all – that continue to take massive toll around the globe. It’s all so easy for us. Yet for millions on the continent where I’m headed, getting such protection is anything but easy. These are some of the things we take for granted.
In my first few days in this country, I am perplexed by what appears to be a vast one-dimensionality to contemporary Tunisian music: the people all watch and listen to the same stuff. I’m not new to Arabic music. But with eerie similarity, it’s like The Big Game is on every channel, all day, all night, every day, every night. I don’t get it. I must be missing something.