Tyra: Experiencing Minnesota

By Tyra, Nairobi

By Tyra, Nairobi

Traveling to Minnesota was AMAZING. It was my first time on a plane, and the long flight was not good to me. At least I had Zayana, who sat next to me on the way over… although she fell asleep before we even took off.

Minneapolis is beautiful. The weather was a bit extreme at first, with temperatures as low as 15 degrees Celsius, but we got used to it in no time! Our first outing in Minneapolis, dinner at Betty Danger’s, was great—I loved the food, the company, and the warm feeling it brought. The view of the Mississippi from their Ferris wheel was breathtaking.

The city tours were super interesting—we were all glued to the windows of the van, gazing in awe at the marvelous houses and constructions. Minneapolis has such rich history, as does St. Paul. From the Mill City Museum to the governor’s home, the history is well kept and treasured. Each time we came across a shallow body of water (like Minnehaha was at the time) or a fountain, I couldn’t help but notice the coins that had sunk to the bottom. This was unusual to me.

Our tour of Mia was inspirational. So inspirational, in fact, I think I’m having a change of career path. Art conservation inspired me; it was interesting to see how ruined artworks could be restored. I’m not aware of anyone doing that in Kenya, and I would be honoured to be the first :) . We played a game in the galleries that required us to find an artwork that fit a prompt we chose, which was interesting. It made us explore our minds and get in touch with our feelings and our past in some way. At the Walker Art Center, trying to figure out the meanings of the abstract artworks was also incredibly fun. I’d smile to myself once I figured a piece out.

The Minnesota Zoo was AMAZING!! I saw animals I’ve never seen before. The setting was beautiful, the animals were beautiful, and I had a great time. Otters are so cute, and seals are incredibly smart! The wolves really took my breath away. I still can’t get over the fact that I pet a shark and a sting ray! I also had a great time at the Big Thrill Factory--it was really fun, and I would do that more often if I could. It happened to be Zoe’s birthday, too!

I loved visiting Washburn High School. It’s a beautiful school with engaging teachers and welcoming students. I loved their biology, AV, and art classes. I even got to pet Tom, the snake from the biology class who occasionally slithers out of his box and wanders around (I don’t find that strange or terrifying at all).

Finally, meeting all the girls from the Minneapolis side of GDW was amazing. We’re so much alike even though we’re worlds apart. We have similar interests and we’re all full of ambitions. I’ve made a lot of friends and I’ve learned a lot. I’m honored to have been working with the National Museums of Kenya, Mia, and Girls Design the World. I’m privileged to have met everyone I met through this program. I’m eternally grateful; I love you all.