We have slept in very different places so far but one was really special:
Somewhere in the north of Guinea, between Koundara and Labe, we crawled along the terrible dirt road and had to stop for the night – the 165 km were not doable in one day but took us 2 full days!
Anyways, we pulled off the main “road” and drove into the bush to look for a nice spot to camp. We did not expect to meet anyone in the middle of nowhere and so we were quite surprised to drive up to 2 little “typical African” huts with a man on top of one. They were at least as surprised as we were but it was all very friendly. Mr Jallow invited us over to stay with him right away but we preferred to stay in the car. It is always a lot of responsibility when staying with people, I think – for both parties and then everyone feels obliged to do and say things. So we had a nice chat and then prepared for the night and they had to finish fixing the roof which was blown away by the rain the previous day.
It was so beautiful there, up on a hill, the forest around us, hardly any noises and a nice sunset. It was a nice feeling to have that family around so we did not feel completely alone – which was nice especially when the rain started and you never know if it might turn into a major storm.
We had a good night sleep and woke up by some cows passing by. After breakfast we said good-bye to the family and left a small thank you gift for their hospitality and the firewood they had given us: we gave them one of our coffee cups and a towel together with some mangos and they really appreciated that. They didn’t let us pay for the firewood and giving money is not always the right thing to do and it changes the atmosphere and the relations, I think. It puts people into positions, the giver and the money receiver and does not show much respect so I prefer giving other things than money. He understood the meaning of it as we told him that we keep one of the coffee cups and that we can now stay connected.
It was a nice night and a good experience for all of us.