I am not sure that this blog fits properly into the week’s photo challenge since the description of the challenge also includes the concept of experiencing something surprising on the road. I suppose that seeing things for the first time in far-away places that you are very not familiar with very often presents you with the unexpected and includes the element of surprise. So, hopefully, these pictures are not too far off the mark in addressing the theme in spite of my hesitation….
This is a nostalgic trip down memory lane with reminders of a visit that we made to West Africa many years ago. During the course of that trip we made a road trip from Dalaba, Guinea, to St. Louis , Senegal, and back, with a stop along the way in Dakar. Everything we experienced was new to us!
Even though the roads that we initially traveled on during this trip were paved, the travel experience was more suited for the adventurous because of the state of these roads and the nature of the driving.Coming out of Labe in Guinea and on our way to Tambacounda in Senegal we found ourselves on a dirt road that stretched into the distance. In fact the dirt road runs for over a hundred miles. The fact that a main road connecting two countries was actually a dirt surface was astounding! But life is tough for the people of Guinea even today.We finally got on to a paved road closer to the border with Senegal. (The construction of this road was funded by the Chinese government.)The highways in Senegal were for the most part in good shape.This thunderstorm in the distance looked quite ominous.They had some good local roads.We encountered some older forms of traveland some strange advertising.Vehicles were overcrowded with people taking up every inch of space both inside and outside the vehicle.The extent to which the vehicles were overloaded was amazing.We encountered crowded roads in the cities and towns.We finally headed back to Guineaand back to the dirt roads leading to Labe.People live simple and very often happy lives in places like this in spite of the absence of modern development. They tackle problems on a day to day basis and let the future take care of itself.