Published: July 15th 2009
July 15th 2009
From the ferry to Goree Island
So, I got another ride from the Spanish foursome and their fun van, but they were a little less fun this day because they spent the night at the police station because of some trouble with the locals (first the girls, then the boys).
And they had to pay a bribe to not be sent to jail.
If you combine that with the bribes they paid at the border and each police checkpoint you could say it is much more expensive for them to travel than me.
Anyways, it took me just as long to get to the center of Dakar as it did to get from Saint Louis to the outskirts of Dakar. Now that is a traffic jam.
Met a nice guy on the bus (the Spaniards dropped me off at the airport). Who gave me a bunch of safety tips. Wow, I thought he was overexagerating.
It took me less than a minute to attract some guys attention. He then proceeded to follow me around trying to help me find a hotel, even though I told him repeatedly I didn't need or want his help. Finally found a decent hotel.
Then I went outside to find a place
to eat (I was very hungry) where another guy wanted to show me the way to a cheap restaurant. I didn't want his help either (after they always expect a tip), and after he followed me around for 10 minutes the first guy saw me with the second guy and they proceeded to fight over me. The first guy won because I admitted that he saw me first (some kind of weird right to annoy me).
First guy then tried to convince me that buying weed from him and drinking beer and having sex with prostitutes was a good idea for the night. My idea of food was "boring" apparently eating doesn't make you have "the happy life." Finally I just told him straight up that there was no way he was getting any money from me. He finally left.
Then I walked alone for about a minute before I met my third guy....and on and on.
I did get my food.
Then later First Guy saw me talking and walking with a female guide (lets call her First Girl) and got pretty upset and accused me of just coming to Africa to have sex (mind you the girl was
good looking and probably had something to do with why I was less annoyed at her). He told me that I hated Senegalese people and was a racist.
Fortunately I was relaxed enough to ignore him. I think he was trying to push me into a confrontation.
Anyways, the girl gave me a necklace (I think I humoured her, or she was preparing to make another sales pitch later today at a greater advantage) and I went back to my hotel.
My hotel at night is a brothel.
So I walk into the lobby and have a girl grab me by the balls and say, "What you want me to do to you?"
This reminded me a lot of midnight Barcelona. You should have seen the reaction of the hotel manager. He hit her with a stick. Weird.
I got my Gambia VISA today no problem.
Dakar is expensive, it turned into an 80 euro day due to the visa, hotel, ferry to Goree Island (where the slaves where shipped to the Americas) and food (I did get a good coffee yay!)
I sat on the beach and drank a beer (the island is almost void
Point of no return
for many millions of slaves
of touts due to the price to get there: 7 euros).
Now it may sound like all I have done is complained about Dakar, but something about the city is really cool. It could very well be the most active and lively place I have ever been. Lots of people doing things. Talking, laughing, crying, greenery, ports, trafficjams, police, tourists, markets, everything...
Could I live here? Maybe, but no way would I want to live here.
But definetly a good experience for visiting. A big change from the small cities (and dead city: see Casablanca) and desert of North Africa.
See you in a few days Senegal, off to The Gambia (and time to hear English as the primary language again!)
There are more photos below