Tourism in Cameroon is tough. Although this country has many spectacular sights and is far more developed than other African countries, the decrepit transportation infrastructure makes travel grueling and dangerous. Furthermore, the lodging and food can be quite expensive for what it is.
I wanted to go to the Extreme North Province of Cameroon to satisfy my curiousity and wanderlust, but in the end, it did not feel like it was worth it. Fortunately, Alex is a lot more laid back about the experience. Having never been to Africa before he expected the difficulties and was willing to roll with the punches. I just got annoyed.
I realize now that what I like most about being here is living and working in a small village where I know people in the context of their daily life and community. Being a tourist is not at all fulfilling in comparison. After dealing with all the delays, discomforts, and potential dangers, what you get to see of the destination is quite shallow and superficial.
Alex in an elephant's footprint. We did not get to see any elephants but did see their guerilla tactics to keeps the annoying tourists at bay: stomp up the road so that the land rovers can not get past.
Giraffes! Here a herd of giraffes races past. When they run it looks like they are in slow motion, but they can cover a lot of ground with their gangly limbs.
The beautiful Porte Mayo hotel, a relaxing oasis in the hot and dusty town of Maroua.
The similarities between Cameroon and Mali are remarkable. As in Mali, it is hot, dry, the people are predominantly Muslim, and the lingua franca is Fulani. The main food is millet paste and sauce made of peanut butter or various green leaves.
A woman sits next to her house, two granaries and kitchen. She is one of 46 wives of a chief.
The only good thing to come out of it was that we had a long talk with an Iman from Chad in the shade of a thorn bush, while waiting for our luggage. Then, some nuns from a nearby town took pity on us and fed us delicious food and put us up in their calm sanctuary, without even asking for a marriage certificate.