I just got back from a week-long trip to Ivory Coast. I spent most of my time on the mine site up near the Mali border and did not get to spend nearly as much time as I wanted seeing the sights.  Once the work was done they drove me to Abidjan, the big city.  They told me it was a 6-hour drive so I braced myself for that.  It turned out to be an excrutiating 11-hour drive!

On that drive we hit 7 or 8 military road blocks.  In the north, near the mine site, the road blocks were operated by local rebels.  Further south they were run by Ivory Coast military.  Neither were friendly and didn't like pictures taken.  At one road block the soldier yelled to me as the barricade was being removed and we drove off:  "L'Afrique est pour le noir!...".  I couldn't understand the rest but I got the idea.

I got sick as a dog on the drive down to the city.  I had the driver pull over five times for me to vomit by the side of the road.  I think it was mostly car sickness as the next day I felt fine.  But I can't help think there something in my stomach that shouldn't have been there.  I did pull over early in the drive to pick cashew fruit.  Whether or not they made me sick I don't know, but damn they were good.  When we pulled into Abidjan 11 hours later, I was in the back seat of the pickup curled up in a fetal position.  That was the worst ride ever.

In the big city, Abidjan, I only got to see the central market.  I'm so sorry I did not get to see anything else as it looked like a great place to sightsee and people watch.  Oh well.  I took the pictures I could and saw things I've never seen before.  I hope you like the pics.  ♦


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