Filed Under (Beninese culture, General) by Rob on 26-02-2008


Well, in spite of all the comments, nobody quite hit the nail on the head. It’s actually that there’s a French-style phone box in the middle of the photo and nobody here actually uses them. They must’ve been installed a few years ago, but in some cases only a concrete base remains. Furthermore, I’ve never seen anyone making a phone call from them. No, in Benin if you want to make a phone call, you go somewhere like this:


That’s more like it – just the job! A wooden shack with a conventional telephone inside. The phone is connected to a device which counts your units and there’s a person in there who tots it up at the end and tells you how much. I guess Africans are much more into person-to-person interaction then putting coins in a machine! Incidentally, this box was just a few yards from the green one in the same village.

Just thought you may be interested…

7 Comments posted on "What’s unusual about this photo?"
Phil on February 26th, 2008 at 11:15 am #

If that’s a phone box shouldn’t it be red?

Lingamish on February 26th, 2008 at 12:10 pm #

Rob’s not in the middle of it with a silly grin?

Rob on February 26th, 2008 at 12:27 pm #

Good answers, guys, but not quite right yet!

Phil on February 26th, 2008 at 2:06 pm #

That motorbike is standing up all by itself?

Tim on February 26th, 2008 at 2:42 pm #

The tyre (UK spelling there!) atop the paillote?

alex on February 26th, 2008 at 2:52 pm #

Is it some sort of petrol station? And the hut with the tyre on is where you can get your service stop meal deal of sandwich, fizzy drink and crisps?!

pam thomas on February 27th, 2008 at 3:47 pm #

I never get tired of being surprised by the electricity wires!!! always amazing to me!