Guinea-Bissau part 1

Guinea-Bissau Travel Blog

 › entry 22 of 86 › view all entries

From Casamance we crossed a layed back border into Guinea-Bissau. Here the army is out of sight. Gone are the intimidating parades of "protection" and survelance from Casamance.  The tropical forest has become more dense; tall palm trees, swamps and mangotrees all compete for the space, trying to reclaim the tarmaced road and the ricefields. Dotted between this maze of green are small villages. They consist of large mudbrick bungalows centered around wells. Under trees adults sit, talking, playing games or watching the world go by. We join two men over a large bowl of peanuts: They are proud of their rich countryside. Mangoes, bananas, oranges, nuts,rice; All grow here!

In the afternoon the women start grinding the millet, banging large sticks in enourmous clay pots. Fires are lit and children gather to play or help. On their backs most women carry toddlers in scarfs. It strikes me how the breast is not an issue here: Women breastfeed anywhere and especially the older generations garnments are often not designed to cover, enhance or shape breasts in any way. I think how strange the western worlds and the islamic worlds perception of the womans body is; There is such a clear purpose of it, yet mens sexual instincts take priority over our bodies. In Guinea-Bissau, i learn, that animist beliefs exist peacefully side by side with islam.  I instantly fall in love with this place, fooled by the tranquillity to believe that the problems of the government are far removed from here.

But ignorance is bliss as they say and as we enter the capital reality hits hard.

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