Before I left America I thought that Namibians would not be accepting of us in their country. As a tourist, I was not sure they’d be concerned about our wellbeing. I thought traveling to Africa would be a risk. My mind was crowded with questions about culture and lifestyle. I was worried about food, water sanitation, communication, and my safety.
Some of these assumptions were correct, but not to the degree I expected. The people I’ve encountered are friendly and accommodating. Our tour guides, travel guides, and our lodging hosts enjoy talking about their lifestyles. Namibians are honest about their culture. All have enjoyed teaching us what they know, their jobs, and how they make a living. They don’t mind answering our questions. They thank us for coming and for being interested in their livelihoods. I feel comfortable here.
There was only one time I was uncomfortable. However, it was not related to our hosts’ demeanor. It was when we saw lions at N/a’an ku sêwildlife sanctuary. They were pawing at the ground, running at the fence, and roaring. It was so loud, I felt like I was in a small room with surround sound. But, even then our tour guide reassured me that we would be okay. Beyond this one instance I have felt right at home. With having said all of this, I hope to better understand the culture, and be an advocate for those who are curious about Namibia.