Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Bissau, Guinée Bissau, December 19, 2018

We've come a long way since the 5th of November-

So last night five of us shared a room; two in the bed and three on the floor.  Our shower didn't work and at 4:30, the generator expired and there wouldn't be power for another 14 hours.  All for $125 US.  What a rip off.  Anyway, we had an early start because we knew it would be tough going the 2 km to get back to the paved road.  We could only go about 2 km/hour because of the trees hanging over the road.  I guess they aren't used to big trucks.  Luckily, Richard was able to get up on the cab and push the larger branches away so we made it through without any broken windows.  There are a lot of marks on the side windows that I think will come off with a good scrubbing.  There was a lot of screeching and groaning going on as we passed through-

There seems to be at least 3 classes of people/families with homes in rural Guinée Bissau.  Some live in homes with thatched roofs, others with tin roofs-

and the newer homes have terracotta tile roofs.  Driving into the city, the streets are wider and the cars are nicer.  There are quite a few newer buildings too, mostly painted nice pastel colors.  Bissau seems like a richer country than where we have been.  Once back in the city, we went to the Ivory Coast Embassy.  It's not too formal of a place because there was no flag on the outside and the sign was falling off the outside wall.  They seemed a bit fiberglasted when 27 of us walked in and they had to make more copies of the visa form.  We couldn't read all of it so we just filled in what we could, which wasn't much.  TIA.  It's so funny because one can read numerous websites that say all kinds of different requirements: one photo, two photos, a copy of your passport, a copy of your yellow fever page, a copy of your Guinée visa because heaven forbid you would want to stay in Ivory Coast, and money, always lots of money.  They also often want to know where you're staying so we just look up a hotel on and use that.  Such a waste of time!  Anyway, we only needed 1 photo that we stapled on ourselves, filled out a brief form and were told to come back tomorrow or maybe the next day.  Really?  I could have those visas ready in a couple of hours, but two days?  Oh ya.  TIA.  We're not in a rush anyway and then I couldn't believe it.  We met the new people - Thomas and Carole who have already been here a couple of days.  They found a cheap hotel and that's where we are staying too.  WE ARE NOT BUSHCAMPING!  The hotel is awesome: we have our own bathroom, HOT water - I don't remember when I last had a hot shower although with the temperatures, a cool shower has been fine, and AIR COMDITIONNING!!!  The only downside is that two of us have to share a bed, but it's a queen and I'm with Melissa, who weighs 98 pounds and doesn't move or make a sound when she's sleeping.  Once settled, I wandered around town then enjoyed my room.  I may never leave!

Looking forward to 3 nights here!

P.S.  Growing up so fast- 

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