Mungo Park (The First Westerner to explore The River Niger)

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I have wanted to write this for a while now but had other subjects in mind to write about first.. Anyway this post may not interest everyone but it interests me so i had to share it ūüôā

I came across the name Mungo Park after my boyfriend mentioned something about him.. so i took it upon my self to learn more about him as i am a major history freak when it comes to Africa lol.. it turns out i have a lot in common with him other than the fact that we share the same surname..

Mungo Park is also Scottish like me and also had a massive interest for Africa, again, like me lol He was a Scottish explorer of the African continent he was the first westerner to encounter the central portion of Niger River, or so i read.. He studied medicine and botany in Edinburgh university and later went on to do a course in Natural history..

I also read that he completed his studies by completing his exams in London. After studies he then started work and offered his services to The African Association. The African Association was a club dedicated to exploring West Africa.

Mongo Park set out for Africa and reached the Gambia River on 21st of June 1795,  he then chose the route crossing the upper Senegal basin and through the semi-desert region of Kaarta. He was captured and imprisoned for four months.. i am not entirely sure why but i will find out one day lol.. he then escaped on the 1st of July 1796, he had nothing but a horse and a compass with him. on the 21st of July he reached the long-sought Niger River at Segou, he was now the first European to reach river Niger. He followed the river downstream 80 miles to Silla, where he was obliged to turn back, as he was lacking the resources to go further.

On his journey back to Scotland he fell sick at Kamalia. A man then took him in for seven months and helped him. ¬†He was thought to be dead but then returned to Scotland with news of discovering the River Niger which brought a positive¬†reaction from the public. He then went on to write a very successful book called “Travels in the interior districts of Africa” which was about his travels all around Africa, how he survived and the people he met along the way which gave Europeans a idea of what Africa is really like. I am yet to read this book as its hard to find after all these yearz, but im looking into finding it.

Mungo was then invited back By the government to lead another expedition to the Niger. He accepted, and made his way to Gambia then to Bussa.  Mungo park died in Nigeria in 1806 after their ship hit a rock in Bussa and they were attacked with bow and arrows by people, mungo and others on the ship drowned.. One of the slaves who were on the ship, Survived.  He then went on to tell the final scene of mungo parks story..

Mungo parks son set out to find his father after being lead to believe he was being imprisoned . unfortunately mungos son died of fever soon after.

Mungo Park’s remains are buried along the banks of the River Niger in Jebba Nigeria. After mungo parks death, westerners then started to gain interest in Africa and they wanted to explore more.

I find this story very fascinating and could read about it all day! My family and friend like to joke that Mungo Park must be my ancestor lol I also joke about it too.. It is funny that i also have plans to move to Africa and explore Africa and planning to buy a house in Nigera.. Is Mungo park my ancestor? We are both Scottish, both have a huge interest in Africa with Nigeria at the top of the list and we share the same surname hehehe..

Anyway i read alot about him and if any of the information i wrote is incorrect, please feel free to correct me as i am happy to learn more and i am not an expert on Mungo Parks story.

This was a long post but i wanted to share this story as i found it very interesting and believe anyone else who loves African History will love it too.. I would also recommend reading his full story as it is more detailed than this post i wrote..

Thanks for ready and feel free to correct me on anything ūüôā

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Bring Africa to you!

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As most people know, I have always wanted to go and¬†experience life in¬†different countries around Africa since i was a small kid.¬†Unfortunately it is not that easy ūüė¶ First of all because i was too young and had to finish school etc Then when i grew up i wanted to finish studying and work to save money. AGAIN¬†unfortunately it was not as simple as that. When i started working it became impossible to save money. After paying bills and daily living expenses i had almost no money left to save. So yeah, Its been a long wait for me to live my dream. So now i have been fortunate enough to travel to Africa every year!

The reason for this post is to show people that just because you are not in the country you would like to be in, doesn’t mean you cant bring the country to you ūüėČ For the past 10 years or so, I have been living in a way that is more African than Scottish lol¬†It’s very sad for me to not be able to hope on a flight and visit my favorite countries around Africa any time i want. So, until the time of my yearly trip, i continue living in a way that i would if i am in any country in Africa…only that i am in Scotland!

I would like my friends to read this and gain something from it as a lot of my friends feel sad and miss home. So let me just give u some tips on how to feel at home even if you are not at home ūüôā

First of all i would say, don’t change your diet just because you are not in Your country. Of course there will be days you eat some pasta or some local food of the country you are in but continue eating your¬†Favorite Ghanaian or Nigerian food too! I eat Nigerian/Kenyan/Ghanaian food every week and it really makes me feel like i am enjoying a part of Africa ūüôā Some of my¬†awesome¬†cooking skills below :p

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Secondly, I always play music everyday anywhere i go i have my headphones in blasting my favorite Ghanaian and Nigerian songs! It is also a way of feeling connected to those countries in particular.

Third, Don’t change your dress code to “fit in” with the country you are in. Their is nothing more pleasant for me than seeing ¬†people in the UK with their traditional wear. Beautiful! I love to also wear and buy many clothes from different countries in Africa and head wraps. It makes me feel like i am showing my¬†personality¬†on the outside!

Also i would say, don’t forget you mother tongue when you are out of your home country. Yes, of course u need to speak English to the public who don’t understand your own language , but other than that, always use you native language. I also like to Learn languages so i can communicate and join in conversations with my friends who have came from countries in Africa.

Another thing to make you feel connected to Africa is to always get regular updates on news and what is happening in your country in Africa. I LOVE to read and learn new things about all countries around Africa and i always have. This makes me feel very connected and know so much about African countries as if i have been living there my whole life!

If you haven’t REALLY studied and learned about a country then you wont feel connected to it even if you have been there. I am very sure i know more about many countries in Africa than some people who have lived in or been to many countries in Africa lol This is because i do all i can to stay connected and learn all i want to know about Africa. I even wanted to studying a course called “African Studies” at College but instead, I just spent my whole life reading and teaching myself. Saved my self the Huge¬†University¬†fee too haha!

Anyways i hope you enjoyed reading and i hope you have taken something from what i said. Please don’t loose your connection to Africa no matter where u go.

Thanks for reading ūüôā

Africa wa ni okan mi ‚̧

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