A little bit of Michigan in Yaoundé
I posted a shorter version of this video to Instagram, but I think the entire thing is interesting. This drive is between our house and my daughter’s school. I started the video not too long after crossing the main roundabout near our house. It’s sped up, but you can still get an idea of what this part of the city looks like.
Also interesting is that is begins to really rain about halfway through the video — and you can see folks running to get under something to stay dry. Cameroonians really don’t like to be out in the rain (who does?).
The video seems to slow down later, but that’s just us getting into traffic.
The area where we live has a number of bars in nearby and there is also a large hotel across the road that plays loud karaoke into the night. So, even though we’re set back from the main road a bit, it can be a bit loud in the evening (the karaoke crowd likes Celine Dion). But subconsciously, we are all becoming familiar with Cameroonian pop songs — even if we aren’t actively seeking them out. They get pumped into our heads as we sleep, or try to sleep.
This particular song has played frequently at night and I started recognizing it often as I was at the grocery store and other contexts. And now I can share it with you all — try listening to it as you fall asleep.
Also noteworthy is its interesting uses of cam franglais: lyrics like “Est-ce que tu know que je t’aime” is strangely appropriately Cameroonian, as well as the general mix of languages throughout the song.
(Disclaimer — I’ve attached the music video, and while it doesn’t contain anything you can’t put on youtube, it is a music video and therefore might not be appropriate for everyone). Click “Continue reading…” (if you see it) to continue to the video.
Last week, I had to investigate a network problem on the campus. The school where the boys attend wasn’t able to connect to the rest of the campus network. There are little boxes with networking equipment attached to various buildings and inside random offices, so my first order of business was to check that all the cables were still attached and the network equipment was operating correctly.
So I make my way over to school — it’s a short 5 minute walk. I find the network cupboard and I open it. The inside looks like this:
Immediately a small lizard starts running around inside scared that his hiding place has been discovered and there is a human at his obvious exit point. Eventually, I am able to shoo it away and I can begin to continue my investigation.
Watch out for lizards, folks.