Hello friends and family! Will and I have internet for the next day or two, so we are probably going to be updating a lot! We’ve been writing a few posts over the past few weeks, but haven’t been able to post them. So, here they are!
Apples are abundant in Wisconsin most of the year. Actually, they are pretty abundant in the States as a whole. No matter the season, you can find apples in the store. Sure, at times the apples are better. And you can only get the “really good” apples in the late summer/autumn. But nonetheless, there are apples all the time.
I’m pretty sure in Cameroon it is mangoes-at least in this region of the country. And right now, it is mango season. In an area of the country where there is not a particularly wide variety of foods available, one of the staples is mango. You can buy them in the market. You can buy them for a dime from a child on the street. Or, if you are as fortunate as Will and I, you can get them from one of the four trees in your yard that are dropping them like they are hot.
Well, that last statement isn’t actually true….I don’t think many mangoes here get to the point where they are ripe enough to fall out of the trees. One of the activities that the children her engage in is extracting mangoes from trees. There are a few ways they do it.
1) One or two children (usually the ones who are a bit older) climb into the mango tree and throw them down to/at the smaller children below.
2) One of the children has a really long bamboo pole that she uses to knock the mangoes out of the tree. That thing is heavy and it looks like quite a bit of an ordeal to stand it up (it’s about 20 ft long). The children here are very strong.
3) The kids pick up half-eaten mangoes or mango seeds or any other projectile off the ground and throw them at the mangoes in the trees, hoping to knock them down.
This happens every day-usually in the afternoon when they are returning from school. Needless to say,Will and I eat a lot of mangoes. This is in large part because our neighbor, Elisabeth, tells the kids that they must share their mango hoard with us. We are very appreciative and are currently eating at least 2 mangoes a day. This is such a privilege since both Will and I come from the land where you are lucky to find a mango for sale under $1.50/ea. So, while we are in Cameroon, we are going to take advantage of every mango opportunity that presents itself. Yum!
Much love from Meiganga, Cameroon!