Headed Home: A journey to Sierra Leone

Headed Home: A journey to Sierra Leone
Jul 22, 2019 by Jemila Pratt
River Number 2 Beach: JaneSCK

“Una kushe. [1] Kushe! Welcome. You done cam!” [2] Grama seemed very happy to see us, which helped to lift my grogginess. Giving her a great hug, I felt a rush of joy. We had waited much too long to experience this moment. As she clapped and danced in excitement, I understood what it meant to be home, in Sierra Leone. With the civil war having just ended two years before our arrival, I felt unsure of what our beloved country had to offer. What destruction would we see? Who might we encounter? Where can’t we go? These questions cycled the corners throughout my thoughts as I traveled nearly 7,000 miles from Los Angeles.

Before reaching the embrace of my...