Bambara is a very poetic language. The word for fruit, for instance, is JIRIDENW, which means 'children of the trees'. N'dusu ka sira, means 'I am sad'. But in literal translation: 'my heart is crying'.
The Aga Khan Foundation’s scaffolding to restore the collapsed South tower of the Great Mosque takes the shape of a medieval battling ram. The last unseasonal rain in the beginning of November seeped in to the very fibre of the tower, and silently destroyed it. In a parallel just as destructive there are deadly silent powers working their way into the core of my life here in Mali.
Despite wanting to keep this blog a light hearted causerie on my life as an an ex-pat hotelier in a remote Heart of Africa destination, I am finding myself compelled to plunge, once more, into melodrama of a personal kind. I do not yet know the outcome of the present crisis, and I will refrain from going into it just now. It will be resolved by next week in one way or another. Let us just say that it is very serious and existential even. Let us also say that an African family is a 100 tonne bulldozer,or, why not? a battling ram, demolishing everything in its wake. There is no place for personal likes or dislikes. One simply does what the family consensus decrees. A European tip toeing gingerly into this environment will be squashed and annihilated. A European, with our namby pamby post enlightenment ideas of justice and egality will certainly always come out the wrong side of any argument, however much we try and conform and understand.