Dakar

Trip Start Sep 05, 2012
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24
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Trip End Dec 22, 2012


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Flag of Senegal  , Dakar,
Wednesday, October 3, 2012

More embassy business this morning (hopefully the last) with cote d ivore and Gabon. The Ivory coast border with Ghana is shut due to an attempted coup, it's seems both countries are blaming each other. We were able to meet with the ambassador for cote d ivore who said the border was officially closed but we may be able to "negotiate" something at the border so we agree to feed the beast and we are gambling on that route! Let's what happens! He said the visas will take 48hrs but after a pulling out maps and dramatising the trip he agrees to an express visa... For an express visa it is 110 000CFA which has to be paid cash to him. Unfortunately the cashier is Ill today so poor him will just have to do the admin himself! Cash handed over we're on our way.

We had lunch at the French institute, a very civilised chilled restaurant in the heart if downtown Dakar. Still so hot 39degrees today.

Directions to the Gabon embassy proved interesting! So far the people are very friendly but specific they are not! Ask for directions and immediately a crowd gathers and in amongst much arm waving and discussion you're sent in a very general direction... The destination sometimes being up to 5km away... up this road, over that way, go, you will see....

For diner we went to the les almadies quarter, amazing seafood served on the beach in very informal restaurants. Adrian fancied mussels and seeing a kilo on the menu for 3000cfa he thought it was a winner, it turned out to be 12 very large very tasty mussels but not a kilo. Very amusing to watch adrian arguing with a 9 year old waitress over false advertising... Bring on trading standards!

The African renaissance statue is a huge monument to regenerating Africa, apparently a further 6 million euros has to be spent on it lengthening the women's dress...haha it is short!

We went to Goree island this afternoon, it opened as a slave holding station before they were sent to America. It ran for 4 centuries and over 20million slaves passed through. It is an amazingly beautiful place with a very sad past. I imagine quite spiritual if you can get a moment without a hawker in your face every two feet.

Very keen to get going again now, probably one more night in Dakar. Having dinner with Cheikh and his family tonight, more good people just helping out!
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