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Song: Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)
Artist: Shakira
Memory age: 21
Current age: 23

The summer of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Coincidentally, the same summer that I study abroad in Tanzania. Living anywhere on the African continent this summer means lots of late nights at sports bars. Everyone is alive with excitement. This song comes on at least once every time we go out dancing. And it’s always immediately followed by K’naan’s “Wavin’ Flag”– no surprise there. One day I take a walk through my village with Kibibi. She works as house help for my host parents, but she dreams of leaving it all behind. She wants to move to the next big city over to find a real job and to finish school. Kibibi doesn’t speak any English, but her Swahili is slow and easy for me to understand. She loves Shakira’s new song. It is her anthem. She doesn’t own the whole thing, but she has the ringtone on her phone. So as we make the long trek back to our house, up the endless red dirt road, she plays it on repeat. And we dance and laugh and dream about the future

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