Chapter 20

East Legon Ghana
Journal Entry:

One of the most refreshing parts of life is that it is a book that never ends; plot twists and new characters never stop introducing themselves to the story. The protagonist is always changing and becoming new again— and after so many chapters, you’ll look back and think how you never could have predicted the way the story would evolve.

During my second year of college, I thought I really understood who Emily Margaret Manakides was. I’ve been reading about her my whole life. From what I knew, she was someone who liked to be on her own. She seemed friendly and cared a lot, and a little stubborn, too. Little did I know that this was a mask over her real self.  I stopped trying to figure her out, because I accepted that this was the way she was, and how she always would be. 

Ghana provided a new chapter in this book, and I remember the burning curiosity to see how she would move through a new environment. I knew her movements so well: the way she greeted people and the way she said jokes were all recycled sentences I’ve seen before. They worked, as they always had. But something changed. Her mask began to crack. It fell, hitting the ground, shattering like a glass bottle against a concrete floor. I didn’t understand. It wasn’t until I started to look closely at the words on the previous pages that I realized I didn’t know her. At first I didn’t recognize Emily without her mask.