First really social evening out

Trip Start Feb 02, 2008
Trip End May 03, 2008

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Flag of Senegal  ,
Saturday, February 9, 2008

i had a good friday evening out . Having ARRIVED at the office at 0730 in the morining - i left at 2010 at night .... It has been a v demanding week - pretty much days like that each day - followed by home at night to grab a bite and do more emails/rpts, then bed.

Anyway last night - Peter (one of my two Reg Prog Mngrs - Raphael being the other)said - lets go for a drink (same restaurant/bar/club that i went to during the week with the Ndjamena evacuees) ... a whole load of very internationally mixed staff of ours were there - some with partners - and some other people too - a journo, 2or3 other agency people , etc. Pete's wife (caroline - a speech therapist used to working at the marsden) is lovely and we had v long chats all together - he's a v good guy.
The place gradually filled up with ever more elaborately and colourfully dressed Senegalese folks ...
Everyone's been saying to me - oh, the nightlife doesn't really start till midnight or after. and i haven't quite believed them. however, by the time i got there last night, and had several beers, and then a bite to eat, still nothing had happened by 2330 ... but, sure enough, at midnight the band started playing wonderful live senegalese traditional music - and by this time the whole place was crammed with people. Senegals famous (in europe) musicians are people like Ismael Lo, Cheikh Lo, Youssou N'Dour, Baaba Maal, Orchestre Baobab, etc .... I hope to catch one of them live here if I am lucky .... The music is v distinctive: poly-rhythmic drumming, guitars, keyboards, etc and often a kora (trad w african giant gourd stringed instrument) and uninfluenced by western traditions ... really lovely floating high pitched male vocals .... But i was falling asleep ! so I left at about 0100, leaving most of them still there, and walked the dusty 15-20 mins back here to the flat.

fell into bed ... completely exhausted after the week of short nights and v long working days. ...
... apart from the unwelcome 0800 telephone call waking me up from CAMEROON from a staff member who almost refused to be evacuated from Chad (he arrives here on monday i think - which i am not looking forward to)... i managed to get determinedly back to sleep and slept thru, fitfully ('cos there is a lot of road noise in the flat, till 1130 ... which made me feel lazy, but GREAT as I REALLY NEEDED it.

so all in all - a jolly time, and now i must get out and explore a bit, which i haven't done at all yet really .....
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