Bamako Impressions

8th March 2016

Day 20 of ± 189

Rising over the hill, the wide birth of Bamako’s buildings sprawl tightly against the Niger’s bed. Civilisation engulfs us again as we wind down the hill to the city’s busiest level. Mango trees and faces on mopeds and rubbish piles grazed by cows line the roadside, as its width is reduced by steady flows of brightly dressed people, fuming mopeds, bikes and overloaded communal green taxis — hordes of them — everything moving back and forth in the African way. Perhaps it is stereotypical, but it helps to describe the way of movement about colloquial tasks here, and is maybe due to the fact that the African people seem to ‘know time’ a lot better than those in high-speed ‘1st world countries’. Everything that needs to get done is still achieved, as the pace of walking has direction and purpose, despite lacking in speed, unlike that of the high-paced ‘man in a suit on the way to the office’ type of walk, where the meaning of time and feeling of the present is forgotten and only the destination, i.e. the future is focused upon.

Beginning to cross the bridge — heading back to base. Left to right: Lukas, me. Photo by Martina Bright
Beautiful — the biggest roadside mango stash. Photo by Martina Bright

The city hangs in the hot haze, the Niger River only briefly parting the density of still heat and pollution radiating off faces and tarmac, as we cross over the length of the kilometre long bridge amidst persistant cars and buzzing mopeds. All this goes on whilst I fantasize about the rows and rows of neatly piled mangoes behind us on the other side of the bridge. Why do I keep putting off buying these particular ones?

Our base in Bamako — The Sleeping Camel (

Tomorrow → Day 21: 11th.March.2016 —I wish MY EYES were a CAMERA



— Trying to portray reality —