Dalaba – Fouta Djalon – 13 November

So much to tell. But first the really important stuff 😉 We slept last night with a blanket. The weather here at about 4000 ft is quite pleaseant. Maybe 80 during the day and 60 at night. And the humidity is reasonable. We also had two vegetables at dinner last night. Canned peas and cooked onions and tomatos. Went well with the BBQ chicken. The taxi ride here was OK too. People don’t hassle tourists here as much and that makes it easier to rearrange ourselves at the taxi stops. We take our panniers and odds and ends and load them into a large duffel which we brought almost by accidentm but it means only one thing to keep track of. As well as the bikes and small backpacks.

Miracles happen or people are really helpful. With the help of the French running groups organizers and their assistant Aisha (umlaut over the i), the GPS was returned without any damage. The major made an announcement at the school that when the batteries went dead the GPS would blow up. A child dropped it off at the major’s house and ran. Aisha made three or four trips to the village to connect with the right people and spread the work. The major is a very nice guy too. He runs a CD “boutique.” He has maybe 200 music CDs in stock. But that is apparently enough to afford a moto. But his village still depends on well water.

The French group started their five day run today–don’t know if explained this before.

To answer a question: why are we here? Louisa got interested in West African art–fabrics and masks in art school. And then she came to enjoy all the world music from West Africa. Since I’ve known her she said she wanted to come to West Africa. I had no particular interest, but about two years ago, I agreed to consider the idea and read some travel guides and decided many things would interest me here and travel was possible (barely). We had planned to go at this time last year, but visas and shots take a while to organize, and we put it off a year; established a schedule to make sure we got things arranged in time. So here we are. One of my interests in going to second and third world countries is that they will change rapidly, so I have to visit them now. The element of adventure must be part of it and getting away from all the comforts. I think I learn more than I would from other means too. Louisa likes bicycle adventures too.

For you peak baggers (and you know who you are), we bagged the highest peak in the Kindia area Saturday. And our thighs are still reminding us.

And we just found out what all of you have known for almost a week. The election results. Fantastic, wow!  What can we say, but the country can now be turned around. This makes my day, my week, my year.

The internet cafe we are in is supposedly the only one in town and is in back of a private house, not in the main part of town, down some back streets. It may be that these people are well off and somehow and associated with an African American who set up a program here to teach English.

Time to sign off. My previous post may not have been posted yet, so these may come out of order.

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