12 November 2017


Days 5 and 6 - The first weekend

Days 5 and 6:    The first weekend

Most schools are closed at the weekend so we decided to spend our time visiting compounds and families and have a bit of rest and relaxation.

A late start after the exertions of Friday saw us heading to the Medical Research Council’s main site in The Gambia. The MRC is a UK agency that carries out and funds medical research. It has a unit in The Gambia.  That unit carries out research and also has a clinical unit where local people can come if unwell. We had brought over some items, mainly clothing for the baby unit in the unit’s hospital and we delivered those. We visited a couple of compounds to see sponsored students and visited The Gambia’s best bookshop to buy some school books that some students had requested. The bookshop is punningly named “Timbookto” and would put many a UK high street bookshop to shame. We had to make a lightning return to the MRC to pick up something left behind and then finished our day out at the Calypso Bar at Cape Point, where the Gambia river meets the Atlantic Ocean. The bar there overlooks a small lagoon. On the far bank of it a group of crocodiles live. Smart readers can tell me what the collective noun for crocodiles is! We all photographed the crocodiles lying on the bank and dipping in to cool down and feed.

In the evening Linda joined us and we went to a delightful sea-food restaurant a couple of miles away for our dinner.

On Sunday morning we started our day at Langtombong’s compound. He is one of Kathy’s and my sponsored students. After chatting with him and his family for a while we drove to Abdoulie’s compound.

Abdoulie and his wife Aminata have a new baby, Isatou, who is just two weeks old and absolutely delightful. Abdoulie’s other children soon arrived followed by an impressively large number of other children. We played maths games with some of them and Mo led a singsong with a group of the younger (and not so younger children). We had a delightful time and then moved on to Wandifa’s compound.

Welcome Isatou and congratulations to Aminata and Abdoulie

We were met by Wandifa’s charming wife, Mariama and his three children along with his extended family. Pippa met a local tradesman there to discuss having some furniture hand-made for Yundum barracks schools who are desperately short of furniture. We now have some idea of what he can make and how much it will cost. We will now have to discuss this with the schools to see of it meets their needs.

We all thoroughly enjoyed lunch which Mariama had cooked for us. It was chicken domoda which is chicken I a spicy pureed peanut sauce served with vegetables and rice.

Back to the hotel then. David and Regina had been out for the day with one of their sponsored children and her mother. They had all come back to the hotel for a swim and we were joined by Linda and her “family”.

Tomorrow we are going to the North Bank. This requires a 5.15 start to catch the first ferry

<< Home