Blogs from Liberia, Africa

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Africa » Liberia November 25th 2015

After a long delay but finally the removal of the stuck truck the decision is made to stay at Libassa a second night to avoid another bush camp, we leave the following morning 25/11/15 on route to Kitpatwe waterfalls, after a food shop in the Monrovia suburbs named "Red Light Motor" district we join onto some wonderful roads, by which I mean Tarmac on behalf of the Chinese Gov, (part of a trade deal with Liberia) they lead us nearly the whole way to Kipatwe falls at 4pm. Time to swim & play in the water before setting up camp under some humongous trees. 26/1/15 Head straight for the Guinea Border, the whole process including 1 Liberia exit stamps, 3 Guinea outposts; military, customs and immigration takes nearly 4 hours after which we begin our journey ... read more
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Africa » Liberia » Monrovia November 23rd 2015

Sadly we had not yet received our permit to cross the intended Guninea/ivory coast border cross and our applications were refused by the ambassador. This permit is only required as the border has been closed for no apparent reason, suspected political/election build up. Plan now is to use our Mali visa to go try the Ivorian embassy in Bamako and enter the Ivory Coast from Mali later in the trip. This news split opinion in the group, some certain to leave the trip as many see cote d'voire as the highlight and the most important destination. If we are refused entry to Ivory Coast full stop we shall divert around Bakina Faso instead, a potential outcome, a small but not critical disappointment for me personally it is the case. From Monrovia we spent some time to ... read more
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Africa » Liberia » Monrovia November 22nd 2015

The following morning 20/11/15 we arrive at the Liberian border and take 2 hours waiting to cross. Meaning the Ivorian embassy in Monrovia is an unlikely ambition in Friday pm traffic, we divert to Robertsport, a fairly deprived yet picturesque beach district to wait until Monday for Monrovia. We spend that evening searching out food supplies and set up camp on a beach with basic facilities. The second evening myself and 6 others from the group take up the invite from a local South African guy called Jo who has more or less emigrated to Liberia with his unclear yet obviously profitable real estate empire. A lot of drinking ensued, all on the house along with food and Loud Africans party music. Jo has 20 boats aimed at sports fishing across the region, that Sunday he ... read more
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Africa » Liberia » Monrovia August 4th 2013

‘This iss one off our boys...’ presented John Bull as we climbed down from the motorbike taxi, ‘hee goes bye da nickname Moneh Man’. At which point a small boy crept out from behind John, head down and his bony hand out to greet me with the traditional shake and finger snap. The bustle of West Point market surrounded our short introduction before Money Man (real name Winnie, he later told me) led the way through the crowd to the edge of the swamp where a short plank of wood laid the path around the back of the end building. Once around the corner and my flip-flopped toes were well and truly marinated in swamp juice, we found a couple of corrugated tin shacks providing shelter to a handful of teenagers and guys in their 20s. ... read more
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Africa » Liberia June 2nd 2013

Will you be checking your bags all the way to … Monrovia?, intriguingly asks the perplexed Air France gate agent rifling through my passport, searching for that obscure Liberian visa. Gazing around, while her colleague assiduously checks in the far better dressed and accessorized clientele, it would seem logical to question such an atypical “final” destination. Let’s face it, Nice Côte d'Azur Airport is most likely to be a landing spot for glamorous stints aboard large yachts on the French Riviera rather than a jumping off point to a poverty-stricken West African country still licking its fresh wounds after 14 years of civil war! Oh what an interesting world we live in… So there I was, having just spent 4 days at the iconic Cannes Film Festival to raise funds for Media Impact, through an intimate ... read more
The host and I - "Celebrating Cinema with a Purpose"
Thank you for the support Paris!
One of the most genuine smiles I have ever seen

Africa » Liberia December 8th 2012

Another mission and yet another country, after North Korea and Iraq, here I am for the very first time in my life, working in West Africa! Fully settled in, time to write my first entry about Liberia, my new home for a little while, no security issues here so I am very much determined to discover step by step this part of the world! Many things have happened during my first few weekends in Monrovia, or should I say outside of Monrovia...Robertsport and its national surf contest, mind-blowing; a great farewell of a dear friend in Liberia first ecolodge hidden between jungle and sea an hour and half drive from the capital and my very first close encounter with chimpanzees in the wild... Monkey Island, Liberia here we come! The getting there part, as usual one ... read more
Paddling time together for Sunday
Chimp Family Picture
Peace & serenity along the river...beautiful Liberia indeed...

Africa » Liberia July 30th 2012

The week after my last blog was one of those landmark weeks. One of those in which everything that happened seemed serendipitously planned and you cannot wipe the smile off your face or the sense of satisfaction from your heart; when, if you take a second to just stop and look around, you wonder how you ended up here. It was the moment in which, even though you’ve been comfortable in your new place for weeks, in seems like someone flipped a switch and you suddenly feel home— you finally get the public transportation; you know the potholes to avoid on the road; you have your favorite market for the best avocados; your preferred tailor is programmed into your phone; local restaurant employees notice when you change your hair. It really all started that Tuesday, when, ... read more
Clinic files
Indeed!
Ms. Liberia

Africa » Liberia July 25th 2012

The lack of blog writing in the last few weeks is indicative of a busy and fun-filled time here in ‘Mama Liberia’ (as many a billboard around here calls it)! I now write to you from my third home in country in just seven weeks, in Paynesville, a budding “suburb” of Monrovia. It’s farther from town and work, but the house is nice, the housemates are great, and most of all, I have my own room for free for the remaining weeks that I have left. Things work most of the time, though water pressure and stable voltage remain hot commodities. So much, in fact, that I recently fried my computer charger/adapter because the of the volatile voltage spikes. (Thank goodness there is a strong expat community out here that provide all sorts of extra supplies ... read more
Fishermen from their boat
Yay!- Reached the convergance of Lake Piso and the Atlantic Ocean!
Picture the 5-star luxury

Africa » Liberia July 5th 2012

Since I’ve last written, the skies over Liberia have continued to pour with reckless abandon and the daily pounding of liquid needles on tin rooftops has become my daily alarm clock. Almost immediately each morning, the melody and lyrics of Toto’s song pop into my head: I bless the rains down in AAAAfrica!…I passed some rains down in AAAAfrica! While this may sound like torture to some of you :), I revel in it quite a bit (both the song and the sleepy, cozy environment that rainy gray skies create). I’ve never been anywhere else that’s rivaled Kaua'i’s rainy seasons the way Liberia has this summer! Other than this consistency, though, nearly everything else has changed. I now write to you from the capital city of Monrovia, where the Farmbuilder... read more
Laundry Day
Clothes shop in Kakata
Nail Salon!

Africa » Liberia » Kakata April 7th 2011

Anthony is a gregarious Liberian who has experienced more in 30 years than most people do in a lifetime. Forced to flee Liberia at an early age, he escaped with his family to neighborhood Guinea, where he obtained an education, interrupted by bouts of civil unrest, and eventually came back to Liberia a few years ago. He is now married and has a beautiful daughter in Monrovia, where he works as a Driver. Today, I find myself walking while exchanging stories with Anthony on a remote, white sandy beach in Robertsport, a sleepy town in Northern Liberia, just a few miles from the Sierra Leone border. Captivated by the conversations, I forget all about my sandals, which I seem to have left behind somewhere. After a few minutes of searching for the misplaced footwear, it becomes ... read more
Idyllic Robertsport
With Yeanee, Merlin's Officer in Charge at the Little Bassa Clinic
Maternal Waiting room in construction




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