Thanksgiving 2005 – Still Waiting

Still no definite go-ahead from London after we send out desired departure date (January 1 + 2) almost 2 weeks ago. I send a follow-up note today.

I also changed the title of this blog to “Travels in West Africa” alluding to the famous travel diary by Mary Kingsley from 1893. In chapter 1 of her book she has this entry upon arrival in Sierra Leone from Liverpool, England:

“We reached Sierra Leone at 9 A.M. on the 7th of January, and as the

place is hardly so much in touch with the general public as the

Canaries are I may perhaps venture to go more into details

regarding it. The harbour is formed by the long low strip of land

to the north called the Bullam shore, and to the south by the

peninsula terminating in Cape Sierra Leone, a sandy promontory at

the end of which is situated a lighthouse of irregular habits. Low

hills covered with tropical forest growth rise from the sandy shores

of the Cape, and along its face are three creeks or bays, deep

inlets showing through their narrow entrances smooth beaches of

yellow sand, fenced inland by the forest of cotton-woods and palms,

with here and there an elephantine baobab.

The first of these bays is called Pirate Bay, the next English Bay,

and the third Kru Bay. The wooded hills of the Cape rise after

passing Kru Bay, and become spurs of the mountain, 2,500 feet in

height, which is the Sierra Leone itself. There are, however,

several mountains here besides the Sierra Leone, the most

conspicuous of them being the peak known as Sugar Loaf, and when

seen from the sea they are very lovely, for their form is noble, and

a wealth of tropical vegetation covers them, which, unbroken in its

continuity, but endless in its variety, seems to sweep over their

sides down to the shore like a sea, breaking here and there into a

surf of flowers.”


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