I feel more rooted here right now than I have felt anywhere for a long time. Its strange. I like living in the city. The village ares here lovely, clean, self sustaining and plastic free. The people in the villages look bigger and healthier in general too. But I enjoy winding through the garbage and goats, going to the little cafes, (more like benches on the road with one guy and a thermos of hotwater,) and meeting people, sitting on a moterbike and being careened through the moterbike filled streets. There are always new things in cities.
I have finally gotten to go out dancing a couple of times. The night clubs here mostly all have red and black walls, huge mirrors and diamonds painted on them. They are classy and people through money around. There is clear privledge here. Most people cant buy beer in Ouagadougou, and here people are drinking twice the daily wage of 80% of the country.
But its really fun. People are always really really surprised that I am there and even more surprised that I like to dance. I was stopped in the street yesterday by someone I didnt recongnise. You are the white girl that likes to dance! He said.
Last night I went to an art exhibition for an artist I didnt know. It could have been San Francisco. Little chilled foods and sangria and people shmoozing eachother. Lots of french ex-pats here, with red lipstic and flowy little dresses. I ran into an artist I knew and we each grabbed one of the tiny foods being carried around on a tray. His was a little dish of baba-ganoosh, without a bread. He stuck his finger in it, but it didnt really come out of the dish. When the lady with the plate of food came by agian, he politely asked- excuse me, what am I supposed to do with this? She didnt know eather. Then my friend Vivian, who is a vacuum cleaner, just solved the problem by slerping the whole thing out of the dish.
I have my ngoni! After talking with the the overly spiritual rasta dood about his overpriced ngonis, I went to the lady who sells me cool magical things and bought a giant calabash. Then I went to the goat butcher and bought a bloody skin. Then I went to the carpenter and got the long instrument neck made. I got pushpins and string and fishing line. I gave this pile of things to my friend Yanick, who knows a Griot. The Griot put the whole thing together and it is beautiful. It has 8 strings and I am going to learn how to play it. Last night I sat in wonder, studying, stroking and strumming it. All together it was less then 20.00 compaired to 100 euro. Im not apposed to paying money, just to people trying to shmooze me. Now I need to find someone to teach me how to play.
Yesterday, I also whitnessed the most dangerous sport on earth, apart from maybe russian roulette. A guy from my neighborhood took a trip to mecca and when he got back he through a party. The party game was a horse race down the road. There was a man on each of two horses, and a third man hanging on and running between the horse. he swung himself up to sitting position behind one of the men. These are Galloping horses going extreamly fast. It was insane. And it wasnt just one crazy guy doing it either, people kept taking turns. People laughed at me for being so shocked.
My art is moving along. I got a transformer so that I can use my power grinder which speeds up the sanding process quite a bit. But I cant actually us it as much as I had thought, because of the extreamly non flat surfaces of my artwork.