It was hard to leave the Palmarin area and the wonderful folks at Le Yokam. Some of the most amazing scenery I have ever seen. The Sine Saloum Delta is simply stunning. Largely flat, with towering Baobabs, covered with shallow glass like water at their feet, deep greenery abundant with flashes of brilliant white from the feathers of an Egret as we passed by on the dusty broken roads. It struck me as a place of simple quiet beauty. With more and more wildlife showing up I was a happier bunny. And after 3 days sitting out with Marcel, Edward, Marie-Ann, Silvia and Joseph and the family Yokam, I felt sad to be leaving.

Sine Saloum Delta

Sine Saloum Delta

After blasting through Mauritania we had some time on our hands. So, as a consolation we decided to hit The Gambia. And with English as one of the prime languages it was an easy decision. Visas were obtained easily in Dakar and off we went. The border corssing was fine and upon hitting the Gambian taxi rank there was the usual riot and waltz with our packs to keep the rabble at bay ! We then found our way to Banjul. A small town, quiet and can be navigated easily and hassle free. We immediately loved it. Cold beer and English….what more could a man ask for ? Next was Fajara. By the sea and our last few days with an opportunity for a swim before heading inland. ( We also found a bleedin deadly Indian restaraunt round the way – top scoff was had ! ) 3 Days later, and a bone shaking journey, we were in Bintang Bolong. Not really much to say about this place except that the setting amongst the mangroves was very nice and the odd Striped King Fisher and Abyssinian Roller about. Next, Jangjangbureh (Georgetown) again not much to say about this place either. I did think it would be bigger. But it was just a dusty island in ther Gambia river largely d’void of food, electricity and water.

Fajara Sunset

Fajara Sunset

The situation with food, power and water was worrisome. More and more all three became scarse. We are quickly becoming shadows of ourselves and with the blatent police corruption we have encountered numerous times The Gambia is leaving a sour taste in my mouth. The final straw was being told upon exit that the princely sum of 5000 Dalasi each (about 320 Euro) was required for exit. I nearly flipped. I told the officer, from between grating teeth, that he would not get his money. And ten minutes later we left, no bribe and with our passports. I’m very disappointed with The Gambia. Initial reaction was great with the banter we could have with the “bumsters” and having a swim and general lounging around. But, as time went on we just had not realised that the rot had set in.

muni

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