Oh… You Use Toilet Paper? Senegal 

My air bnb host is wack. Her communication is not only inconsistent but confusing and here I am in Senegal with no address just directions to her home. The “passport checkers” and their machine guns aren’t here for that so a man I met on the place named El Hadije surely spelled wrong meaning ‘the King’ walked up beside me. Told the man I was with him. They took my fingerprints and moments later I am walking through a gate w an overwhelming number of people wanting to exchange my money, grab my bag and give me a taxi home all while staring at their deep chocolate complexions. I have never felt so light skinned.

Still.. no.. address. And there is no mobile internet. 

The new found friend asks for her number and he calls her and slightly scolds her for me not having her address. He then declines her sending me a driver and stated that he will take me himself. His brother was there to pick him up. I had no say in this I simply followed behind.

IT WAS AT THIS POINT THAT I KNEW I WAS TAKEN

…but I wasn’t the nice men took me to my home. Brought my bags inside. Inspected this woman’s home for safety and then left me be. She wasn’t the least bit bothered.

I got a quick tour of the air bnb and realized that they cool this house w fans… I had sent myself on a mission trip for ‘holiday’ smh… 

I excuse myself to my room to sulk. It’s hott. I’m hott. I did this to myself. I have to be here till Wednesday. I have no internet. LORD IT’S SO HOTT!! Maybe I’m on over my head. IT’S SO HOTT!! I fall into a deep sleep w dreams filled with air conditioning before I hear a knock on my door. My host is leaving for work.. #BYE I knew I should’ve stayed with the white men downtown but I’m trying to experience culture and support the people and here I am hott..

Can you tell I hate being hot?!

I sleep.. mad that I didn’t think this through. I am usually a better traveler than this. I didn’t even bring my wall adapter. I have no internet and the Wi-Fi is weak.. I have no communication w the world… depression… sleep… sweat.. wake… sleep… repeat 

Then I snap out of it! I am on vacation dang it and I will enjoy it!! I get up and decide to take a walk and explore my new neighborhood. 

I ain’t go lie (like 50 Tyson) I was a bit nervous. There were groups of men everywhere and I didn’t wanna cross the line of friendly African America and rob and kill the innocent tourist. I am told that isn’t an issue here but the police walk the streets w machine guns so.. something is happening somewhere. 

I passed by some of the most beautiful women fully covered in garb and somehow not sweating. Kids who ran circles around me speaking in French and running away when they realized that I was only English.  I made friends w a group of women kinda…  before I heard my name. 

“COURTNEY IS THIS YOU OVER HERE”

My air bnb host has a little brother named Issa. He spotted me as he was traveling home. He says pretty Americans stick out so he had no doubt that though half a mile away I was his sister’s guest. I hopped in the cab with him and discovered many places and ate fried chicken. I asked if we stopped for fried chicken for dinner because I was black and he responded “Yes. Black Americans love chicken right?!” 

It’s now 825 PM and dark as everything w little to no street lights so I came back inside the house to sit under the fan cause IT’S HOTT!! I’m about to call it a night and read my book under my mosquito net!

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