Free trip to Africa at the Library Feb. 17
by Sublette County Library
February 7, 2011
The Sublette County Library in Pinedale invites the public to join Pinedale resident, Tom Peters, on Thursday, February 17th at 6:30 pm when he will share stories and photos from his travels to Kenya, Tanzania, Burkina Faso and Benin Africa as this month’s speaker for their Arm Chair Traveler Series.
Peters has a background in wildlife management. His inspiration for visiting sub-Saharan Africa began as a wildlife photographic safari to see the Big Five (elephants, rhinos, buffalos, lions and leopards). Meeting another Sublette County resident - Matt Murdock, (Tom and Pam’s son) and twenty year missionary to West Africa became the incentive for Peters to return to Africa for two separate mission trips.
"The difference between a leisure vacation and a mission trip is the difference between being a spectator and a participant," said Peters. "One gets a distinctive sense of being in a hermetically sealed environment as a western tourist, compared to the undiluted ‘otherness’ of a radically different culture. Living in such a culture, unprotected by the tourist industry handlers, is both startling and refreshing. Ultimately, it is the opportunity to transition from being served to serving".
Peters hopes his talk will encourage others to dig into the background that sets Africa apart from other continents; the interlocking ecosystems; the multitude of cultures living on the land; the tribal people migrating to the cities; politics that defy western understanding and the economics that are barriers to freedom from want.
"We go looking to see The Big Five, "said Peters. "We do not go to Africa specifically to see the small stuff; such as the bush pig and the rock hyrax. But when we do find them we begin to learn how to see much more there is to this continent, and to distinguish the complexity that is Africa".
Next month, Darcie Peck will talk about Costa Rica and Nicaragua at 6:30 pm on March 10th.
For more information, call 307-367-4114 or visit the library website: www.sublettecountylibrary.org.