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Arriving in Lome, Togo

April 2, 2022

Here we are again after five years and much change in the world…Kids Share Workshops has maintained its standing since 2008 through the generosity of volunteers, including the founder, and charitable donations from individuals and businesses. Never give up when your efforts are for the good of all people. Kristina Applegate

Our well laid out plans for our youngest child, Enzo (cockapoo) to have a two-plus week sleep-away camp with his new Bouchon friends and family, (dogs), (while we were in Togo), ended abruptly due to extreme canine fear from the separation of home and family. Our good friends graciously tried to accommodate Enzo (to no avail) and returned him two hours before our departure. But no worries (Plan B), their son stayed the night, and our neighbor Bill came to babysit when needed before our good friend Lou (planned housesitter) flew in from Maine to save Enzo from complete human isolation. However….as soon as we took care of Enzo, our son Leo’s flight was canceled from Burlington, Vermont to Newark, New Jersey en route to Togo, West Africa. His father’s quick thinking and willingness to drive the six hours in order to connect with us on our PM departure made it possible for Leo to join our mission. Our exit from Florida did not go as planned, but in the end, planned itself out perfectly.

After a somewhat restful night’s journey in the sky, we found Ethiopian airlines comfortable, very good service, arriving with warm greetings and excellent accommodations. Our Togolese guide took us through a smooth visa and luggage check-through, and I was the only family member in need of a yellow fever vaccine. (Costing only $17 US dollars compared to the $300 cost in the US.)

Our French-born, Togolese citizen Denis, (William’s 1996 Camel Trophy companion), made our arrival smooth and welcoming. William’s French conversational skills with Denis’s connections, quickly helped our family adjust on our way to Hotel Robinson; our first meal at the hotel’s restaurant, and later exploring the marketplace. Thanks to Denis’s expert knowledge, we also enjoyed a beach/roadside freshly macheted coconut milk before bedtime!

The beach where we stayed displayed impressive waves that made it nearly all the way to our patio doorstep. Denis shares with our family the dangers of swimming and waiting until the rocks are visible so as not to be swept away and gashed while swimming. We were told there are no dangerous predators in the ocean and very few biting insects. In fact, Denis passionately tells us, that Togo is a very safe country and the home where his heart resides.

Immediately, I could feel the warmth of the people. No one is allowed to carry weapons. The Togo law bans all firearms, or a person can face immediate imprisonment. Our first meal and night’s sleep were lulled by the ocean waves.

Our family drifted off to sleep after our more than the 24-hour journey to the heart of the palms oceanside of Togo.

I will now retire to my husband in our wonderful airconditioned bedroom leaving the sweat on my back to go take a much-needed cold shower! phew…we made it!


Published by Kids Share Workshops and Publishing

Empowering youth through therapeutic storytelling and the arts for social change.

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