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Echo’s Travel Diary

Saturday, 24 Nov 2007

Location: Gambia

MapHello everyone. I am back. Teaching has been zapping me lifeless at times. Holy shit is your first year truly your hardest year I think and I have to say that I hope. I had report cards due a couple of weeks ago and lucky enough I survived it. I even think that I had great parent teacher conferences with the exception of two parents but oh well, you can't win them all.

So life in the Gambia is flowing along and I am still enjoying it. I do have some sad news though, I can no longer meet Tracy in Morocco cause oh my god it is so damn expensive to go at that time so I have had to change plans just a bit. The plan to date is that she is going to go to Morocco until ticket prices drop (almost in half) and then I will meet her in Dakar and we will check out that city for a week or so and then I will bring her back to my home so that she can live and chill out African style. I was a little sad at first but now I am kind of excited. One of the biggest Mulsim holidays next to Ramadan happens around Christmas, it is Tobasky. It is supposed to be great. Everyone dresses up in new clothes and each house buys a goat and slaughters it and then the feast starts. So now I get to stay here and be a part of that.

No I will not be buying a lamb and slaughtering it but I think that I will be joining a friend and his family for the celebrations. Which also means that I need to get me a new dress made. Yep this sister is going to be wearing typical african dress. I will send pictures but just so you know it may not be pretty. I am not sure that white girls can pull off the beautiful dresses and head wraps that these African girls can. I have been told by a couple of people though that it will be nice and I will look proper for the holidays. We will see but I do have to start the tailoring process soon so that it can be just perfect.

It is also now officially tourist season and my god it is crazy. The streets are filled with white people and bumsters following behind. The odd time I do still get "attacked" but I now have mastered the complete PFO and most times they give up shortly after starting to talk to me.

One thing that I haven't told you guys about here is the nuts. My god. I must eat about a pound of peanuts here a day. Some days I have to say no cause I am sure that eating that many nuts a day is probably not a good thing but I can't help it they are damn good. There are three ways that you can buy the ground nuts. You can get raw...which I don't really like. You can also get them roasted fresh and hot..those are okay but still not the ones I prefer. Or you can get the best damn nuts on the planet and these are the boiled ones. They put the peanuts, shell and all, in water with salt and lime and just boil them. The peanuts come out so moist and sooooo tasty. The only thing, which is part of the problem I have, is that the boiled ones don't taste the same the next day so it is best to eat them fresh that day.

It has even got to the point that my students are upset if they don't get any nuts to eat. I now have to buy twice as many just so I can feed them and myself. See another reason why I love teaching in Africa. Tell me what school in Canada you could take bags of peanuts into and give them to all the students. Man the dust alone would kill half of the students in the school. Just a thought but maybe peanut allergies are god's way of thinning the population. Tee hee. I am just kidding, sorry if anyone allergic to peanuts is reading this.

So right now I am at school and really supposed to be doing work but all I want to do right now is continue to write for all of you. However, I have to stay strong so that I can be productive. Until next time.