New family members in Man
Trip Start Jan 13, 2013
23Trip End Feb 04, 2013
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Big Franz was not in his corner, but Franz Jr. was. I find I’m suffering from the food we ate in Sebapleu, nothing too serious at this point. Hopefully that won’t last, or get worse.
We drove to the coffee shop for breakfast at 8:00. About the time we arrived, a column of soldiers came jogging down the main street, in formation. They were wearing red running suits, and marking cadence as they were overseen by officers in the same suits but were also carrying AK-47s. The officers tended to be really big guys.
We ordered the usual: café au lait and pain aux raisins. Then we drove back to the hotel to work and rest. At 11:00 we drove to Séussié’s home on a hillside on the western edge of town. Séussié’s wife had an early lunch waiting for us: chicken, fried potatoes (they know like that) rice, sauce, a sort of fufu in a gluey green sauce for Paul (not at all appetizing to me). It was an abundant meal of careful quality. We sat at a table under a large tree, ate and talked. We discussed the leadership seminars planned for the next day, our families, the church, our work, international affairs and lots more.
After three hours it was clear I could baptize them all, and we decided to go right away. Séussié had already located a place, a local lake used as a fish farm and as the site of a wildcat distillery. He told me the fishermen would let us use the lake for baptisms for 2000 Francs ($4); pretty steep in these parts, but I agreed.
These evening at dinner at Différence plus, we noticed they have doubled the price for our soft-drinks and beer. Instead of rewarding regular customers, they apparently decided we were a captive audience and that they could get a little more from us. No prices are posted (they’re supposed to be by law but this is "more honor'd in the breach than the observance" as the Bard of Avon wrote in Hamlet), so we can’t really argue with them about it. It’s not even really that much money in question, just the principle of the thing. I tell them off for being greedy and tell them we won’t be back, and then adieu. French has two ways of saying goodbye: au revoir, which means “until we see each other again”, expecting to do so, and adieu, meaning “go with God” meaning we may not, or probably will not, meet again. I said “adieu.” And we headed back to the hotel. We’ll have to find another maquis tomorrow.