What to expect from a land I know so little about? It has been a long time since I have been to a country where I have little knowledge of the main sights and attractions, let alone seen photos of what to expect. I had a short visit to Morocco years ago, and can imagine what is to come in Tunisia, but otherwise have stayed blissfully unaware. What will we eat? What will it smell like? Will it be chaos or an oasis of calm?
What is certain is that we will be visiting a number of companies and NGOs: African Development Bank, AfricInvest Group, Carrefour, Land’or SA, enda inter-arabe, SAH Lilas, Tunisiana SA and the Tunisian American Chamber of Commerce. Having just come from Chazen India, I was extremely surprised at how much I enjoyed the company visits and learning about the different business customs and consumer preferences. I originally feared they would be long, drawn-out and generic, but they were some of my strongest impressions from the trip. It was also inspiring to see the natural curiosity of my classmates come out through insightful questions for each speaker. I have high hopes for our meetings in Tunisia and cannot wait to see what my peers bring to the discussion.
It will also be a great opportunity to meet with Kaymu, an online retailer that is a mix of Amazon and EBay. My team is assigned to do a consulting project for the firm on improving delivery ease and efficiency. Without anyone knowing much about the country or general city planning and logistical operations, the project has been a bit challenging thus far. Even so, I have had a lot of fun getting to know the team better. I am sure that during our long bus rides and shared meals, I will also get to bond with everyone else on the trip. We will get into some funny shenanigans and make memories for a lifetime.
Traveling with Chazen, I have the benefit of leaving all logistics and planning to the school. The only trick was figuring out what to pack. Like many of my classmates, I have been traveling the world for the past few weeks. I packed for Tunisia hoping the Weather Channel’s monthly forecasts were relatively accurate. Things are looking good!
For now, I will practice my French from Paris. J’ai hâte d’aller en Tunisie!