Since the inception of the television show "The Amazing Race," I have been obsessed with getting on the show because I believe that I can dominate the competition. The past 24 hours have been a crash training course in the pitfalls of racing around the world... or at least racing between the two biggest cities in Senegal.
I must preface this story by stating that yesterday was the Gamou, the big holiday I wrote about a few days back, and that travel is difficult during holidays.
For this leg of the race, my partner in crime Katherine, our goal was to purchase tickets so we can fly to Ghana and take the LSAT in June. Although we are flying a subsidiary of a large American airline, it is not possible to purchase a ticket online nor is it possible to use a credit card at all. This means that we had to go to Dakar and purchase the ticket in cash.
Yesterday, two third year volunteers were also going back to Dakar so the four of us decided to take a taxi which is more expensive, but which we thought we get us to Dakar faster and would drop us off at our restaurant of choice. We got a taxi after only a few minutes and made it to Dakar pretty easily. All the traffic was going to Thies to get to the holiday in Tivuauone so it was smooth sailing all the way to the delicious Korean BBQ restaurant. The Korean BBQ was delicious and the company was really fun so it was a great evening all around and my craving for Asian food was satisfied.
We spent the night at the regional house reveling in how amazing and successful this trip to Dakar was going to be and watching multiple episodes of The Jersey Shore. It is the Dakar region's guilty pleasure. Please don't judge us. We need stupid, simple pleasures every once and a while.
Katherine and I were all over this trip to Dakar/ plane ticket acquisition mission or so we thought. We had spoked with the travel agent earlier this week and specifically asked what their hours are on Saturdays and if they were open THIS Saturday. The answer was yes, from 9-12. Unfortunately, we were thinking like Americans and assumed we were getting full information and that further discussion was unnecessary. FALSE. We woke up this morning and called the travel agency to get an exact address since that obviously wasn't pertinent information to put on the website. No answer. Katherine calls 98475874 times. No answer. I suggest we watch another episode of the Jersey Shore and call at 10 because maybe they're opening later. We call again. No Answer.
Unwilling to admit defeat even though another PCV at the regional house tells us that today is a national holiday and that there's no possible way that we are procuring our tickets today, we soldier on and go downtown to the office. After several different people give us completely different directs we see a woman opening another travel office and accost her to ask about the one specific office we're looking for. She tells us it's definitely not open, but does give us the correct directions. They were closed. So we took a fairly expensive trip to Dakar to stand outside the office and mope about how stupid we are that we didn't think about the fact that today is the day after a holiday and that there was no possibility that the office would be open. Bust.
By the time we got back in a sept-place and were on our way back to Thies I was feeling miserable and feeling sick. I spent the rest of the afternoon wallowing in self pity that I couldn't eat Moroccan couscous and chicken AND didn't have a ticket and at some point have to go back to Dakar.
I'm feeling better and the recent events of the past 24 hours have prepared me for my future domination of The Amazing Race.
Messy, but Warm
11 months ago