I caught the train to Bobo early in the morning. I love trains. This one looks to be 100 years old, and I felt like I was riding through a black and white photograph. It tooted and rattled down the ancient, hand pounded track. The train runs from Ouagadougou to Abidjan, Cote-DIvoir, and was installed a really long time ago by the French. Most people on it now are merchants, bringing yams and palm fruit, manioc and plantains north. There is less that Burkina exports, its to dry here, so the train was pretty empty. It went through villages that are really small, road less towns in the middle of the bush. It was beautiful, and I felt fresh and excited, leaving some of the hardships my friends are bearing in Ouagadougou behind for a moment. There is a part of me that feels guilty, the longer I stay in one place, the more I understand the difficulty of life here, and I have the privilege to take a vacation from it, while my friends cant. But at the same time. I have only three weeks left here, and I really needed a little breath from the intensity of the lives of the people around me.
The train took exactly twice as long as the bus- all day. I arrived at Casa-Africa, the hotel I know here, and fell promptly asleep. The next morning I prepared to go to the forge that I worked at here last April.
The climate is completely different here, the air is thick, and women sell cashew fruits, and pine-apples on their heads. There are more westerners here too, which its fun, though there seems to be a phenomenon of old french guys picking up 19 year old African girls, fairly creepy in my book. There is alot of bronze work her.
I was walking down the road on the way to my forge,when a truckload of teenage boys started chanting Tubabou-(white in Jula) They yelled to me to jump on. I chased behind the truck and swung myself up. Where to? I asked. Genget! They shouted. Gengit is the water hole for Bobo, on Sunday it is teeming with teenagers, swimming and having water fights. We spent all day there, swimming- (in all of my cloths, as the ratio of boys to girls seemed to be about 50 to 1) I came home, happy refreshed, and ready to start working again. I went to the forge, and made a little program with them. Only this morning has my inspiration returned, creative inspiration comes at me like a torrent but then disappears for long amounts of time as well. I haven’t been making much that I have been happy with for about a month, but suddenly I am sketching up ideas like a storm. I am going to do a series of little pieces inside of calabashes. I can see them in my head, now its just letting them out.