When you go out our front door, take an immediate left onto the sandy strip of road that heads towards the mosque. When you get to the paved road, turn right. There’s no sidewalk, so just walk in the sand as the black and yellow taxis and huge 4-wheel drive SUVs drive past. (Don’t worry – they’ll honk if you’re in their way.) About a block ahead you’ll see two buildings.
Well, I guess ‘building’ is a stretch. It’s more like tents: brightly colored fabric shading a couple benches wedged up around a small table. In the morning you can see flip-flopped feet sticking out from under the benches when the breeze blows the tent fabric.
If the wind blows hard enough, the tent will flap open for you to see people eating long pieces of baguette bread smeared with margarine or Chocoleca (Senegalese Nutella) and drinking coffee from metal mugs, like the kind my dad used to take on camping trips.
By midday, the scene changes slightly. You can smell the grilled fish and fried rice, or whatever Ami (short for Aminata) is making that day. For 500 cfa (about a dollar) you can either be served a plate as you sit on the wobbly wooden benches or, if you bring a bowl with a lid, take your portion home with you.
This is Senegalese take-out.
PS – The power has been on for 24hrs straight!