Saturday, November 3, 2012

Boali Falls

Boali is a town about 1 1/2 hours outside of Bangui.  About 15 minutes down a dirt road, you get to a huge waterfall.  They have also built two power plants that supply much of Bangui’s electricity.  Actually, one was built in1963.  They have also built a dam to control the water flow – and it has provided easier access to fish for people in the area.  (We had some at a restaurant in the town on the way down to Bangui.  It is delicious!  They told me it was carp.) 

In 1977 I visited the falls with some Peace Corps friends.  This is one thing that is much the same – at least the waterfalls.  The steps that go down beside the falls were similar although 30 years ago we could walk all the way to the bottom.  Now, ½-way down the steps have fallen into disrepair – because of the rainy season they said.  Now, there is a hotel and restaurant at the top where before there was only a paillote (thatched-roof held up by wooden posts) for a restaurant that was not operational.  We each paid 1,000 cfa entry fee ($2) and then were followed by 6-8 young men who all wanted to be our guides.  Years ago we were followed by very young children. 

The people have built a narrow bridge over the river just above the falls.  It is one metal cord with sticks that make a small bannister-type arrangement.  We saw two people crossing slowly with a huge load on their heads – they didn’t want their pictures taken.  Two of the pastors and a young women from our group went out part way. 

Here are some pictures of the trip to the falls.
Boali Falls - 2012

Our Group - President Golike and his Wife, Gordon & Betty Olsen, Pr. Paul, Pr. Alan, Me, Arnaise (driver)

Steps - 2012 in need of repair

Pastor Golike and his wife on stairs

Stairs - 1977

Boali Falls postcard 1977

Boali Falls from below - 1977
Pr. Paul on bridge


2 comments:

  1. Oh my God, you were in Central African Republic during Bokassa...congratulations for your work. Greetings from Romania,
    Alex

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  2. Yes, I was. Question is, are things better since then? I think the answer on that is still out. We'll see what happens after this latest coup... Were you there, then, too?

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