Today I write by the sound of African drums. I am in bed, scarcely lit by a minuscule red bulb. Is supposed to keep mosquitos away. At my left, my handsome warrior and my little king to my right. We are on our last stop before arriving to our home in Parakou. We are coming from Lomé, Togo.
Parakou is the second biggest city in Benin, with a population of around 190,000 people. No big super markets, cinemas, or even a park. The paved roads are scarce, and a great point of reference when asking for directions.
Today marks two weeks in Africa. It’s been an intense quest. Initially getting adapted into our new home with lots TLC needed. Three days later, Mateo´s first fever arrived. Throughout this time we had to go to Lomé.
At Michael blog you can read more about our arrival. Here are some pics to give you an idea ;)
Michael and I work for Gebana, a company whose goal is to have the shortest chain between farmer and consumer thru fair-trade. Furthermore the why we are here.
4:30 AM and the sweetest four teeth smile calls for mama. I am breastfeeding, so I am used to this wild night schedule. I am some kind of zombie mix between tiredness, love, and adventure thriving creature. Mamas out there can understand.
I would lie if I say that there’s no tiredness and stress involved in this adventure. Among the palu (malaria) risk, the extra steps to sanitize everything we eat, the heat (always between 28º-33ºC), daily electricity cuts, bad internet, not being able to fully communicate with my reduced French, and add to that any other personal mater and you have a beautiful cocktail of emotions J
We thrive for adventure. The excitement of discovering and seeing Mateo´s eyes light up add to this equation and invaluable meaning.
A short nap and we are back on the road. There is only one paved road that connects the capital Cotonou to Parakou. Riding it is a minimum 7hour long story. Between goats crossing the road, women selling plantains, papayas, peanuts, pineapples, potatoes, watermelons, chickens (alive and dead), coconuts, coal, among other things and we are on our long shopping haul to prepare for the upcoming three weeks in Parakou.
Forgot to mention we also got some palm trees for the house as we could not find any near home