Sunday, August 31, 2008

A day in Burkina

I was treated to a rare insight into life in Ouaga on a Sunday today. Invited to have lunch with Salli and a friend of hers I was soon to find myself astride her little mo bike as she navigated the streets of Ouaga to her home.

Burkina Faso is one of the regions poorest nations and while the elite enjoy a life style that is unimaginable even to me, the majority live a life which is more or less a struggle.

Salli lives in a 'gated community' but no where near the one that those words conjure up to a middle class Asian. This community is a collection of two roomed houses, one against the other in a single compound.

What immediately struck me was the cleanliness, the almost pristine cleanliness of the compound within and without each individual home.

While money was obviously not something in excess, the smiles certainly were as people greeted each other as they went about their Sunday chores - fixing doors, re adjusting antennas, cleaning, cooking.

It struck me how fortunate I am, how much in excess of the basics I actually have and how my desire for one thing or the other are really wants and not needs anymore - not if I went by with how little so many can actually manage.

Lunch was simple wholesome fare, chicken and spaghetti, cooked out in the open, prepared over a period of no more than 30 minutes.

Over and after lunch animated, warm conversation of this and that, simple things that affect life at its basic level.

No comments:

Post a Comment