Crowd surfing in Bamako

It's the beginning of what people call spring in colder areas of the world, 2:30am and I'm crowd surfing in the streets of Bamako. About 6 men are trying to lift me into a black van. One of them tries to grab both of my arms, so I decide to give him my left arm and he attaches it to the van using handcuffs, leaving my right arm free to make a phone call. Off we go, on a ride that seemed to last for ages... It was the first time I felt cold in Bamako.
So, these men are policemen.

"There’s plenty of evidence that time is running backwards"

You know, I really love this place! It’s dusty all the time, the food is crap most of the time, mosquitos are having me for dinner, and I hate aircos in cars. They’ve made me sick before, and I just don’t get why people need to get this ice cold air into their face. I even prefer the leaded dust right into my eyes. But maybe that’s because it was my first time on a scooter, in Bamako today. Yesterday night we went out to the Blabla Club, at the other side of the Niger. Way too expensive.

And then there was Kunnafonix

I expected that, as a white guy from the west, you would also pay accordingly. It happens to be, however, that in Mali people actually don’t try to rip you off all the time. In India anyone would try to get some extra cash from us poor westerners. But here, up to now I only paid too much to a cab driver. I actually knew that I was way overcharged for my cab ride to the Hellen Keller Institute, but what the heck. 2000 CFA instead of the 750 CFA we paid to get back. It was hot, and I didn’t feel like stressing myself. I just told the guy that I knew he was bullshitting me.

My first days in Africa

So I broke my promise to write every day. But maybe I can start to fix this now. I just woke up, and my head feels a bit achy. First I actually like have to warn you that like my English is probably like, so much more Northern American now. My fourth day in Africa. Apart from my hangover I’m really feeling good. No need for culture shock absorbers. No extreme heat - yet. Only a a bit dusty now and then. Yesterday I woke up at 5:30 to drive to Yanfolilla with the Geekcorps 4WD.