1. August in Dakar acts a lot like August in France. Quite a few restaurants and businesses will be closed for their summer holidays. Most restaurants do a pretty good job of keeping customers informed via Facebook pages. Others that don’t should really read this… 😉
2. Small vendors are still open! Véronique‘s amazing all-peanut butter, Diami’s incredible yassa and thieboudieune, Marie’s homemade English muffins, granola, cinnamon rolls, pizza crusts, tortillas, honey, bagels and more… Dakar is home to many small vendors who deliver their artisanal products to your home for a small fee, which usually winds up being even less than you would pay for the taxi fare to go pick up your order. Woohoo! (And there’s also the service side as well: Lamine’s fantastic mani-pedis, Marietou’s custom-made wax print clothing and home decor, Marie Claude‘s massages and spa treatments – all in your home.)
3. The biggest holiday of the year is coming up in early September. Be aware that crime rates increase leading up to Tabaski as the ram sacrifice and its festivities require a lot of CFA. Giving a small financial bonus to Muslim workers who will be celebrating Tabaski is appreciated, but not required. Also be sure you are clear with your domestic workers on how which/how many vacation days are to be given or holiday pay.
4. Forecast: hot. Sorry, this is valid thru the end of October. But these tips may help.
5. Back-to-school shopping is in season at Dakar’s bookstores. (If you haven’t learned this faux ami yet, know that bookstore = librairie and library = bibliothèque). If your kids will be in a French or bilingual school, get your shopping done ASAP. Stocks will run out and may (or may not) be replenished at a later date. Also check with your school to see if any librairies offer your student discount.