In the internet age it’s not difficult to explore the globe. There are many different sites, portals and tools that allow you to get a taste of what life is like all around the world. You can learn about Kazakhstan’s unique culture or the traditional dress of women from Senegal, the history of how Lesotho gained their independence or even the origins of the beret as part of everyday fashion in France. Last week I had the incredible opportunity to participate in an event that changed my life forever.
The internet came to life.
I participated in a cultural fair of students from 45 countries assembled together in the cultural melting pot that is New York City. It was a 90 minute event where students from countries like Azerbaijan, Zimbabwe, El Salvador and France all danced together. There was food from Tajikistan, Poland and the Philippines. Moroccan music filled the air and even the Canadians brought a hockey goal to symbolize their national sport. I learned how to properly shake hands in Africa to show respect as well as bow to my Japanese friends.
Never in my life have I been so utterly shocked at the synergy between all of the students of these nations. The experience truly opened my eyes to how big the world really is. I made friends from so many countries it has truly inspired me to want to travel around the globe. I learned that my friends from Ghana, Mexico, Egypt and Albania share the same passion I do to help their fellow man. I was amazed at the fire and ambition present in them and their desire to make the world a better place. It was a truly eye opening experience for me.
In my past blogs, I have chronicled the idiosyncrasies of working with women, dealing with the creative mind and the balance of freedom and professionalism. I often characterize myself as a Man’s Man. I have come to realize the short sidedness of this characterization. I no longer strive to be the Man’s Man, but rather an ambassador of man. I feel empowered by my new friends and the impression they have made on me. We all live in a world filled with opportunity and hope…and it’s up to us to change the world as we see fit. One man or woman at a time.