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A GL/OBAMA TRAVEL ADVENTURE.

The presidential candidate’s multicultural roots are all the rage. What could this fiery, young senator do for America’s international image? Does it matter that he was born in Hawaii, has roots in Africa, snapped some snazzy school photos in Indonesia, may or may not have absorbed some fragments of Muslim teachings between the age of 6-8 in Jakarta, and probably has a 7th cousin, twice removed from, I don’t know, northwest Mongolia?

I’m not going to get (too) political. This is a travel website! But, oh man, would it be an adventure to trace the life and times of the world’s most scrutinized political figurehead.

From Kenya to Kansas, it’s time to embark on the international, multicultural, hip, happening Globama Tour.

 

1. Ireland:

Surprise! You thought I would start with Kenya, but did you know that Obama’s great, great, great, great grandfather may have been an Irish shoemaker? (I know: stop traffic). Indeed, once upon a time, long, long ago, at a rural crossroads between Dublin and Limerick, Mr. Fulmuth Kearney awoke to the ways of the New World and abandoned his father’s trade for the land of the free.

Enter Moneygall, Ireland, where many of the (298) locals are throwing their support towards their presumed transatlantic kinsman. Kick off your Globama adventure over pint at one of two friendly, family-run pubs with some local enthusiasts. Delve even deeper into Obama’s heritage with an excursion to the nearby lakes, rivers and fisheries of the beautiful Shannon region or perhaps to Galway Bay.

 

2. Kenya:*

If you are still thirsty for some Globamamania, I suggest venturing south to daddy’s homeland for a few Obama beers.

Not kidding. Nairobi’s Senator Keg beer, having recently undergone an informal name change, is selling faster than Oprah’s latest read. Bars across the country are serving up keg after keg of “Obama,” a cheep, yet digestible, alternative to the potent home brews often produced in low-income areas (Obama beer has 6% alcohol content, versus the harmful 40% average of home brews).

After reveling in the Globama enthusiasm of Nairobi*, you could venture west to the Masai Mara Natural Reserve to encounter some wild elephants, zebras, lions, antelopes, baboons, etc.. The reserve is a short distance from Obama’s African “hometown” of Nyangoma-Kogelo, near the shores of Lake Victoria.

 

3. Java:

We’ve all seen the darling photograph of young Barack with his fellow Indonesian school children in Jakarta. We’ve followed the media controversy regarding his 1st-4th grade education and potential exposure to (gasp) the primary religion of Java.

(But what I’m wondering is: did little Barry have a cool lunch box? Was he a Soupy Sales or a Star Trek kid? All I can remember from 2nd grade is a cute boy named Jeffrey and my Winnie-the-Pooh thermos. I’m just saying…)

Right. Anyways, the island of Java is, much like our main man Barack, a cultural and (dare I say) spiritual melting pot. With five recognized religions (Islam being the most widely practiced), it is one of the few places in the world where one can venture a few miles from a tropical beach to see Buddhist temples alongside Hindu Epic performances, cathedrals and mosques.

From the bustling city of Jakarta, you can embark on a variety of guided tours and week-long overland island excursions.

 

4. Hawai’i:

A-LO-HA! As if life couldn’t get more cultural and exciting?

All controversy aside, I think we can agree upon one fact: Ann Dunham really knew how to choose her nesting spots.

Oh, to be a beach baby. Oh, to sip freshly squeezed pineapple juice each morning with your Cheerios…

Oh, to live anywhere but Kansas, thought Ann, when she first enrolled at the University of Hawai’i and later gave the gift of life to baby Barack.

If you are going to pay an extended visit to one of Obama’s haunts, make it Honolulu. There is so much Globama cheer to be shared (and ocean side lounging to be done!) that you, too, may become possessed by the “Aloha Spirit.”

 

The Grand Finale:

Whew! What an adventure that was. How could we possibly top off this superb list of destinations with a grand, exotic, Obama-riffic finale?

Not possible…unless you have a secret fascination with the American Midwest.

You will end your global sojourn in Chicago, Illinois, where senator Obama has made his greatest political mark in recent years.

(Apologies if you actually wanted to read about mom’s hometown in Kansas, but I simply cannot think of anything exciting to do there. All I can remember from my childhood visit to Kansas City is an exploding car on the side of the highway…perhaps suffering from a bit of post-traumatic amnesia. Please, if you are a lover of Kansas, enlighten us with some travel ideas!)

So back to Chi-town: Despite all the bad weather reports, the windy city is actually quite lovely in the summer: it is the only major American city where you can walk from a nice beach to a skyscraper in a matter of minutes. It’s no Hawaiian mai tai, but there are lots of cool museums (which, if you are feeling super quirky, you can visit on a segway tour) and, of course, Wrigley Stadium—home of the Chicago Cubs. There are also plenty of fantastic pizza joints (try Giordano’s deep dish)…and, most importantly, lots of great people. I hear that those mid westerners are a friendly bunch.

 

*Travelers are advised to plan all trips to Kenya in accordance with latest safety updates and travel warnings.

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Comments


  1. comment by: Jess Butcher on Mar 31 at 22:33

    loving your work, Miss Daniel. Class.

    Do me, do me. What sort of magic mystery travel tour can you make out of Solihull (West Midlands), Oxford and Battersea? (or further back – family tree: Huntingdon and St Helens). Hmmm. not so fun I think.


  2. comment by: Momma Berl on Apr 01 at 01:17

    Care Bear your a trip!!!!!


  3. comment by: Catlan on Apr 01 at 09:15

    looks good carrie =)


  4. comment by: BERL on Apr 08 at 00:51

    YOURE SO ELOQUENTLY GOOFY THAT I LAUGH AND LEARN AT THE SAME TIME!
    VERY ENTHUSIASTIC 4 THUMBS UP.


  5. comment by: Carrie Daniel on Apr 09 at 09:45

    Maybe I should take up science textbook writing instead?

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