Rainbow for Africa is a non profit association dedicated to promote health in developing countries.
This blog is about volunteering, health promotion and awareness raising on the world of cooperation and on developing countries

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Ordinary hero: Maria from Burkina Faso

Today's story is from Maria, an Italian doctress who has taken part to our project in Burkina Faso
"You feel Africa immediately, since you get off the plane: the heat makes our jackets, vests, wool and heavy shoes ridicolous. I'm prepared for a long wait at passport control, but it turns out to be rather informal, with a final exchange of phone numbers, in which I end giving the customs officer - Daniel - my only contact number here in Burkina. Then I am overwhelmed by the circus of  "hunting the baggage". I curse myself for not having purchased a case of anotherr color, instead of a big black trolley, absolutely the same as everyone else, and I resign to run from one side to another of the delivery point as luggages are unloaded by hand, dragging behind a deadly heavy red suitcase, making my way among the crowd of people who is doing exactly the same. Recovered my "loot" [=baggage] (clothes + food + many other little things, much less important), I start the not so easy task of trying to recall the face of father Henry, the person who is supposed to wait for me at the ariport. But the father has decided to play me a trick and hiding to enjoy the scene: he finally comes out only when the taxi drivers offers are becoming overwhelming.
The rest of the trip is a rush through the outskirts of the city and then along a road through the bush. The first section is illuminated: in every lamp post there is a guy who studies. At the second village we turn left and leave the asphalt for the dirt. The aim is to spot the barrages (paved fords more or less improvised on a serie of dry rivers), before they make you hood off the road. My companion seems to know them by hearth, and  we manage to arrive at the hospital at 00.30 - Burkina Faso time. The perfume of the acacias in flower is something undescribable when I finally reach my room I'm tired, I'm hot, but I'm happy." (translation by Marco F.)

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