Saturday, February 9, 2013

Waterfall - Chute de Tambodono

Another waterfall! It seems that when I ask people what I should visit in their area, they first think of waterfalls.  So, today, Alain (a Cameroonian who has been showing me some of Garoua Boulai), his brother Gida, a cousin Theodor, and a friend Benjamin went with me to a waterfall about 10 km. from town. 

As is also usual: the first part of the road was good (in this case, paved or being paved –so level and even).  Then we took a dirt road that got progressively rougher until it became a track (used by people and an occasional motorcycle).  We, of course, went in the truck, so it was a challenge.  The dirt part of the road was only 3 km, but it took longer than the other 7 km. 

This was not a big fall, maybe more rapids.  We walked around the area and then had a picnic lunch – but not a typical US picnic, though.  We (well, really, they) cooked meat in a sauce and made manioc (cassava) over a fire.  They do it all the time at home, so why not on a picnic, too?  I also learned more about cleaning manioc and searching for gold.  Here are some pictures.

clothes drying in sun after wash in river

locally made bridge
small butterfly on a fallen leaf

pool dug while looking for gold

sand dug out of looking-for-gold pool- for building construction

emptying pool to look for gold

manioc (cassava) root being harvested

cleaned manioc roots

cleaning manioc roots

cutting manioc to t
preparing manioc to eat

lighting the fire to cook lunch
fire lit

preparing the picnic

food ready to eat!
Descending to picnic rock - I wouldn't go this way!

bathing and swimming after lunch

This month all of Cameroon is celebrating Youth Month.  In particular, Monday, February 11 is Youth Day.  There will be parades of school students and others.  I plan to go to the one here in Garaou Boulai, so I can write about that another time.

Work Update
My primary work at the moment is continuing with language studies – Sango (extending my knowledge through conversation and reading the Bible) and Gbaya (still at a much more basic level, but I can say some sentences and read/write more.  I have decided to go to the Gbaya church service tomorrow.  While my teacher and I have been studying the liturgy in Gbaya, I still expect to be lost for much of the time.  Then, he reminded me that I will have to introduce myself to the congregation!  I have written a few sentences (in Gbaya) that he has helped me perfect and practice.  Now, will I be able to tell when it is time to stand up and use them??? 

Pastor Andrea Walker, the new ELCA West Africa Director, and Anne Langdji, one of the Area Representatives, are coming to Garaou Boulai Tuesday.  We will have some time to meet and they will visit the hospital and Bible School that are here.  I am looking forward to it.

I also hope to soon have meetings with the leadership teams of the Village School Program and Christian Education.  We are still working on when.


  1. Susan,

    You still seem to have patience with your peripatetic mission. (peri= beside; you are surely beside the place you imagined you would be).

    I'll be curious how the education part of your work develops.

    Give my greetings to Pastor Walker.


  2. Yes, education is the main reason I am here. I have been able to engage in very productive planning sessions with leadership teams for both programs, but it is hard to work at a distance. Still, we do have telephones (often with bad connections and delays, but still phones!) and can work some. I am working to help them get Internet USB keys but they are currently sold out in the larger town and unavailable in Baboua. That means, too, that I have promised computer training - which can't be done at a distance. Still, we do what we can. I will keep you posted as the work goes on (and I go back to CAR).