I am not sure why, but this was one of the best moments of my life. We came to this rooftop cafe for a mint tea and a sheesha and managed to catch the evening call to prayer (ذَان.).

The whole time I felt as though I were seeing something I shouldn’t have been seeing; like peeking into another world that I had the good fortune to stumble across. I suppose it was the thrill of travel in a nutshell.


And then Jen, Siro Masinde (my Kenyan colleague) and I made our way back through a dark medina with stray cats picking through trash and the whole thing feeling like a Graham Greene novel. Brilliant.

But it was indeed one good sheesha. Apple-flavored.

By Michael Gallagher

My name is Michael Sean Gallagher. I am a Lecturer in Digital Education at the Centre for Research in Digital Education at the University of Edinburgh. I am Co-Founder and Director of Panoply Digital, a consultancy dedicated to ICT and mobile for development (M4D); we have worked with USAID, GSMA, UN Habitat, Cambridge University and more on education and development projects. I was a researcher on the Near Futures Teaching project, a project that explores how teaching at The University of Edinburgh unfold over the coming decades, as technology, social trends, patterns of mobility, new methods and new media continue to shift what it means to be at university. Previously, I was the Research Associate on the NERC, ESRC, and AHRC Global Challenges Research Fund sponsored GCRF Research for Emergency Aftershock Forecasting (REAR) project. I was an Assistant Professor at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (한국외국어대학교) in Seoul, Korea. I have also completed a doctorate at University College London (formerly the independent Institute of Education, University of London) on mobile learning in the humanities in Korea.

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