Filed Under (Malian culture) by Rob on 15-04-2011

Shipping stuff is fun! We shipped a car from England to Senegal with MSC once and it arrived in great condition and also full of our belongings!

The car came in one of those large metal containers. You know, this kind of thing:

(Image from this website)

However, it’s interesting to note that these huge metal shipping containers do not all find their way back to whence they came. Many, sadly, end up cluttering the streets of cities like Bamako, some still used for storage, others looking completely abandoned, like these ones (all a stone’s throw from my house):

It’s not all bad news, though. Africans are very resourceful and many of them have been converted into stores, workshops even restaurants! Here are a few of the ‘container success stories’ of Bamako:

Now, I had imagined that this phenomenon of ‘container recycling’ was peculiar to West Africa. However, on a recent trip eastwards I found the same thing there. Here are a car parts shop near the main stadium in Nairobi (top) and the ‘Boyz Boyz Mobile Disco’ in Kampala (bottom):

Thanks for reading!

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