Archive for March, 2008

Filed Under (General) by Rob on 06-03-2008

The other day my latest water bill came. Here’s what it said:


Mmmm! So, if I can wait until 30th Feb before paying the bill, does that mean I would be within my rights in not paying it at all?!
Well, you’ll be glad to know we have already paid up, but it did make us laugh – hope it did you too!

Filed Under (Beninese culture, General) by Rob on 03-03-2008

I saw this sticker on the back of a car the other day and had to get a picture…


It’s true that people are in less of a hurry here than back home. When I first came to West Africa back in 1993, I would be walking down the street at my ‘normal’ pace and local folk would say ‘Where are you rushing to, white man?’ Guess I must’ve slowed down a bit too since then! They also say that it’s perfectly acceptable to wait 45 minutes for anything here, although I think this is changing, especially in the city. Mind you, I once waited 1 hour 30 mins for my lunch at a restaurant. The annoying thing was not the wait, but the fact that each time I asked the waiter he said ‘Your food will be along any minute now, sir – five minutes at the most’. This was his answer each time I asked – which was probably every five minutes!

In Cotonou at the moment it pays not to be in a hurry, as in many parts the roads look something like this:


Here’s what’s going on:

* On the coast road, a dual carriageway is being built between the Novotel and the Airport (as seen in the photos on this post).
* On the other airport road (Cocotiers) all the trees have been lopped down and the road is being widened.
* Two fly-overs are being constructed – one in the town centre and the other by the level crossing near Hweyiho.

No wonder President Bush didn’t leave the Airport!! Shouldn’t complain though, as it is progress and will ultimately improve the circulation of traffic throughout Cotonou.


Other News:

* Our ‘birthday season’ is over, Lois, Rob and Ruth having had theirs in February.
* Power-cut season is back! At the weekend we had a cut of 25 and a half hours! (Mind you, this one was actually due to a power cable being severed during the aforementioned roadworks!!!)
* Rob’s teaching an ethnomusicology course at a Bible School in Mali in April. Don’t think he’ll make it to Timbuktu, though!
* The Land Rover’s steering got sorted, so we can now turn right and left – luxury!

Filed Under (Trivia Question of the Week) by Rob on 03-03-2008

Q: Which well known song was composed in 1893 by Mildred and Patty Hill?

Answer to last week’s question: shrove is the past tense of the verb to shrive, which means to confess or to obtain absolution from ones sins.

The winner was: Alex

(PS Do I know you, Alex?)