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Rapport (Thursday, 2011 September 29)

September 29th, 2011

The closest deadline at present is the Saturday deadline for our Trimestrial Report, 2011 June-September. So that’s what I’m working on today, my "day off", after I went shopping at the market. Un rapport is a report, but it’s also used in le rapport sexuel, sexual contact. My dictionary gives "contact" as a general meaning for rapport.

I figure I’ll be sitting at my computer for a while typing up notes and observations about the fairly meager activities I fostered during this period, which (you’ll note) centers largely around summer vacation. But I figured that while I’m writing, I’m not using my Internet, so I may as well upload some pictures.

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This is from the pool party at Dschang. It’s an actual swimming pool! This is at the Centre Climatique, which is a beautiful place.

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Dschang also features an artificial lake.

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A ceremony at one of the local hospitals. One of the local notables had arranged for some French partners to donate some medical stuff, including a bunch of mattresses and a delivery table.

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The "SISTERS", the association of village women in Douala (ex-pats?). They helped somehow with the gift or something.

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Some other association, this time all of local village men (J-C is the really tall one). The way the pictures are framed, it looks like they’re squaring off to fight.

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This kind of ceremony is improved by dancers.

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Sa majesté saying some words in honor of the occasion.

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I was surprised to see a for-reals political cartoon in Bafoussam a week or two ago. The subject is the recent ban on night travel, which was protested loudly by the population. Kirikou is a famous cartoon character here, who is very very small but very strong and clever. (There’s a pop song that goes Kirikou est petit, mais il est fort. I have a copy of "Kirikou et les bêtes sauvages" if you’re interested.)

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J-C’s wife Véronique (host mother #2?) called me the other day to say she was cooking something and did I want to come over for dinner, or should she just send her son up the hill with my portion? But by the time she had finished cooking, it was already dark, and they decided it would be best if I went home with the food, so I could eat at my leisure. They sent enough for two days. It’s cabbage cooked somehow, there’s fish in it too, and the complement is what they call couscous, or in Anglophone foo-foo. This is couscous de maïs, and it’s made from ground corn. It’s dense and bland but has a crisp texture. (Couscous de manioc is pretty much despised by volunteers, but couscous de maïs is acceptable. I think there’s also "wata foo-foo" and couscous de riz, but those don’t turn up much in the West.)

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