Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Joyful reunion...

Before rejoining the tour in Bamako, Mali we stocked up on duty-free candy and wine in anticipation of lots of self-medicating.  Upon rejoining we soon realized that the one thing we agreed with Farron before leaving (i.e. which visa he would do first in Bamako) had changed.  So within ten minutes of our arrival we had to make independent plans to go to the Ghanian embassy.  Gosh, it’s great to be back…

Meanwhile, Max, who had not been feeling well for the last days in Dakar, went immediately to a nearby clinic where he tested positive for a fairly severe case of malaria and was immediately hospitalized.  Since Africa can make a hypochondriac out of anyone, we began to feel inexplicably tired and achy and, after some debate, decided to assuage our paranoia and get ourselves checked out as well.  Bet you can guess the result.  Positive.  Well, mild case for me actually.  Tia (despite having stronger symptoms) turned out to be negative but the doctor believed that our malaria pills might have skewed the test.  So we’re off of alcohol for three days (why now?) and on to our new friend, Coartem.

That didn’t stop us from cruising around Bamako, though!  Motorbikes whizzed by like swarms of bees and we often felt we’d plunge into the Niger if we weren’t careful.  We paid a visit to the National Museum for a cruise among Malian artifacts, spent a night out dancing at a Russian karaoke bar where we met a particularly racist Texan, saw Tomani Diabeté (still just as good the second time) and his younger brother at Le Diplomat and haggled with a Malian woman in the frenetic vegetable market where even our poor French was of no use and we were reduced to bartering for carrots and onions using hand signals. 

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