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Ivory-coast Travel Stories, Page 4

Africa Snake Medicine

Africa Snake Medicine
Sunday August 6, 2006
Aboisso Ivory Coast



This man wanted to sell me the Snake Bite cure, I guess you put on leg and it absorbs the Snake Bite, not excited to know they feel they need.

Africa Snake Medicine


Aboisso Taxi

Aboisso Taxi
Sunday August 6, 2006
Aboisso Ivory Coast



This is a taxi or group taxi between cities. I do not like him sitting my bags up like that, they can fall out and the computer go boom.

Aboisso Taxi


Aboisso Western Union

Aboisso Western Union
Sunday August 6, 2006
Aboisso Ivory Coast



I sent 500 Dollars USA to myself in Banoua, then picked up the whole amount the next day. Aboisso has Western Union, but no internet. They advertise you can send by telephone.

A great way to pay a lot to get money and safer by 10 times than a cash advance.

Aboisso Western Union


Aboisso Goods Cart

Aboisso Goods Cart
Sunday August 6, 2006
Aboisso Ivory Coast



This is a cart to help people carry goods from market of buses. Cote d-Voire - Ivory Coast.

Aboisso Goods Cart


Aboisso to Banoua Ivory Coast Check for ATM

Aboisso to Banoua Ivory Coast
Sunday August 6, 2006, 5:54 AM
Aboisso Ivory Coast

I am going to return to or go to Banoua for the first time, we stopped there on the way to Aboisso to pick up or drop off persons. I will return to the city and live for at least one night to see if there is ATM and Internet there.

I should be able to take one the group taxi station wagons for around 1000 CFA or two Dollars U.S. It is not far, less than 45 minutes. It took me from porthole to porthole about 2 hours with the direct from Bassam Station Wagon to Aboisso trip.

Hmm, it is 5:59, I may take a quick walk to the Gare and see where else the crazy buses want to go; that nobody seems to think is important. This is a bigger bus stop or Gare in a way, more organized than Bassam, who know why, but this is somehow a junction or gate to somewhere.

Aagh, it is 6:00 AM, by the time I walk over there, I could walk over there and leave for Banoua. I am going to Banoua, one way or the other; I will take notes with my camera. Take a photo and I have the information collected. Funny how the world is still using photos sparingly, then again, they hold all the photos on the memory cards until they remove. I have a computer, if I did not have a computer, I would carry a 50 Gig Portable USB hard drive.


Aboisso to Banoua Ivory Coast


Ivory Coast ATM Bank Machines

Ivory Coast ATM Bank Machines
Aboisso Ivory Coast

Abidjan seems to have many; Grand Bassam has one for sure, maybe more, hard to say. I need to load up on CFA.

CFA
---- In 1946 the French established a common West African French currency, the CFA franc (franc de la communauté financière Africaine, or franc of the African financial community). The currency, exchanged at a fixed rate with the French franc, assured that virtually all of France’s decolonizing African territories would continue to bank, invest, and trade with France. All of France’s sub-Saharan colonies became independent in 1960, except Guinea (1958) and Djibouti (1977).----

There is no French Franc now, I am not sure if this money is pegged or connected with the Euro, however the money is good and bad. I am sad if France is still holding them by their money.

I need CFA, I need to load up, and I have one person who told me or acted as if the countries of Togo and Benin are barren. My Lonely Planet is 7 years old, hard to say if the new one talks about ATM’s. The world of travelers check should be disappearing. I would be somewhat stupid to get travelers checks, there needs to be a bank to cash a traveler’s check, or I would guess. I am in a place where CFA is king. I have not seen in Aboisso a place to exchange money. There is a Western Union here, however there is no internet. IF I had the internet, I think it is possible to wire myself money, and then pick up here. It may be a lot quicker to load up on CFA in this manner. However, I have never wired myself money and do not know if it is safe. I mean, it could be hung up in the Western Union office as they could say, it is not available, or even they do not have that much money available. I will try to remember to ask the Western Union office in broken French.

Bonoua is suppose to have internet, that means if Bonoua does have internet I could go to the Western Union site, and send myself money. I think this is a lot safer than getting a cash advance at a bank. I could then pick up the money even in Aboisso, or maybe Noe. Noe appears to be the border town of record with the Gare or Bus stations, and all the transportation. However, Noe is not in the guidebook or my Encarta Encyclopedia map. Annoying when the prominent city on the FEET is not mapped or shown as being big enough to be listed. There is a Club Med in Assine or something like that directly South of my present location. I am tempted to go down just to see if they have anything of interest, ATM, Banks, Internet, good beaches or are they barren like the Grand Bassam.

I am searching for an ATM; however, the daily limit is about 150,000 CFA if I remember correct. This is 300 U.S. and I need to sit for 3 days to get 900, which would get me through Benin and Togo. I have Euros and Dollars, however how to I exchange. Noe is a border town; I wish the tourism part of the world would get their show together and understand. Borders or Entrances to countries need ATM, Bank Machines. Cajero Automaticas or what not. I fly into Abidjan and there is not a bank machine in the Airport, there is many persons who wish to give me the business by exchange, there is a bank, but no bank machine. It was the same in the Domestic Airport of Delhi, I am not sure, you have inside and outside the terminal there.

Travel Infrastructure is asinine, just does not understand. There was ATMs 7 years ago when the book was written. Guides are written for tourist on a 2-week vacation. Otherwise, they would be mapping out the money routes, or where you can get money better, or learn, traveler’s checks are out and ATMs are in.



Caisse Automatique Visa or Visa Electron is what it says on ATMs or Bank Machines in Grand Bassam. I have a Visa with Plus on the back and a cirrus on back. I am not sure, how mine worked or why.

Ivory Coast ATM Bank Machines


Ivory Coast Hotel Information

Ivory Coast Hotel Information
August 6, 2006, 3:07 AM
Aboisso Ivory Coast

I am working on many web sites, all at the same time, however the sites have no clear path to fruition. I am nervous about some sites of mine, because I am competing with the big boys. I received a very good, however disconcerting email a few days ago.

I RECEIVE AN EMAIL
- Jimmy Wales (founder of Wikipedia) will unveil a new online project aimed at creating a free, fully editable worldwide guide of places to go and things to do next week. The site will seek to provide online city guides that offer a truly local perspective. -
http://www.wikipedia.org

Virtualtourist.com
http://www.virtualtourist.com
About.com
http://www.about.com/travel/

The above three links have been some of my sources of information for Aboisso, Ivory Coast, or last of information for Aboisso. I was not able to find information on Hotels, Internet or almost any information essential. A tourist destination is not essential; it is a luxury after I have a place to live, money, transportation. Then I go wondering around looking at statues of dead people.

http://www.wikitravel.org

Jimmy Wales is a very smart man; I heard a lecture by him at the Wikipedia.org conference I attended in Frankfurt, Germany. I cannot or do not understand this new site, when the
http://www.wikitravel.org

Site is really somewhat off the ground. I do not think WikiTravel.org has any relationship with WikiPedia.org, however the same group of free posters, probably are in the mix. In the Free this, Free that, take for Free mentality, grab for Free, open source is best attitude of Wiki worlds, I do not understand why Wales is not throwing his large presence at WikiTravel.org. Seem like redundancy in a free world.

CAN FREE POSTING MAKE A GUIDE?

About.com is more of a push to find researchers site, I have a lot of respect for them, I see really organized, lets find experts. Wiki sites are very difficult to beat, they have done a great job of finding free persons to post, these people scour the internet, books, any source of information, grab it from what could be copyrighted sources, and rephrase, repackage and put on the internet. This is not a copyright infringement, however on the cusp of a problem. I do know or feel they encourage the nabbing of what is somehow or could be construed to be protected.

NO MANS LAND OF HOTELS

I am in the no mans land of Hotel information; I am at the end of the planet, at least for the English speaking world. I doubt I am at the end of the planet if I could type in French and search better in French, but even in French, I am close to the edge of the Hotel ending planet.

BIG MONEY IN HOTELS

There is huge money in advertising from Hotels and Tourist Destinations, also from the NGO advertising strangely; however, these three advertisers are big in the world of strange places to go advertising. Nevertheless, the big one is for Hotels, I believe, not positive.

Does not really matter, I am here in Aboisso, Ivory Coast thinking or asking myself.
- How important is it I collect Hotel information for my site?-

I am not sure there is a backpacker path through West Africa; I am not sure where the paths exist. I on the other hand am not the person to know for sure, as I do not have a library outside my door here in Aboisso where I can go and read. In the USA, which I am never there long enough, less than 25 days per year, there is all the information on the world in the libraries free. The internet sucks still, and is very confusing still, however is getting better. A lot of the information on the internet is about not sharing, while the library shares. I do not understand the library way of doing things, they take copyrighted information, put on a shelf and loan to people free. If I put information on a WebPages, a book, and then loan to someone free, then I am positive I am breaking a copyright. I have scanned guidebooks into the internet now, there are some real sticky problems arising on the sharing of this information.

SCRAPERS
- The wiki idea is to rob, scrape, redigest, rephrase and put on the internet like guidebooks. Not a new idea for any writer, they all do this for the most part.

PERMISSION GETTERS
- The about.com idea is somewhat the same, however they find persons and get permission I am sure. They are a money making machine, therefore easier to sue, although Answers.com seems to funding wiki in a way, I a do not know. It is not a complete separation.

GIVE THEM A VOICE
- Virtualtourist.com rather allows a person to have a voice or say what they think, become famous in their own minds. Wiki is the same, with more of a community spirits I suppose. People can in a way share their travelogues on virtualtourist.com and make virtual a ton of money.

FEET ON THE GROUND - PAPER MAKERS
Lonely Planet, Rough Guides, and Footprints, and many others are foot on the ground, and scrapers, then write on paper.

BOOKS
To write a book or guide that would explain everything about the Ivory Coast and traveler or tourist would want and need, would take at least 5000 pages, and could continue to grow.

FEET
I see feet on the ground as the source of all travel information, whether free or paid.

I HAVE MY FEET HERE
I have my feet here, the information is here, should I collect more or less, or what should I do? I need information for my site, however the word is big, really not possible to collect it all myself.

SELLING INSPIRATION
I think what I am selling to many readers is,
- I can do it, or you can do it. -
Actually it I free, however it sound better to say I am selling it, as if I am pro at selling inspiration. A pro is paid, maybe…

ESSENTIALS COLLECTED BY FORMS
I am in a Hotel, here in Aboisso, Ivory Coast, it has two priced rooms. 2500 and 3000 CFA. Strange as it sounds, I am not sure if the 3000 CFA room has toilet or not inside, my 2500 CFA room does not, however it has a shower and at the end of the hall is the WC or Water Closet as a lot of the world define the toilet.

I do not get puffy when choosing the room. What is puffy in my mind? I did not get touristy…. I did not get pusssssy…. I did not get my priorities confused. I do not choose the room because it was clean and nice; I chose my room because the 2500 CFA room was safer than the 3000 CFA room. The 3000 CFA room has a ledge outside the window, it is possible for a person to climb on the ledge, remove the small panes of glass, crawl into the room and rob me, then climb back out and pretend nobody was in the room.

If I focused as most tourist do or travelers on being comfortable, more than on being safe, then I would be in a danger of being robbed room. I try to focus on safety first, then toilets, hot water, and then on comfort, I suppose hot water is comfort for me.

A guidebook more or less says, this Hotel is safe enough, but buyers beware, you are living at your own risk. I was thinking today, the owner of the Hotel is not so handsome, has an eye problem and his head is somewhat funny shaped. However, after stopping myself, he seems very smart, and ok, however a little taken aback at first. Hard to look into his eyes to find honesty when they seem not straight. The gaze is difficult to see.

A person can live in a Hotel where the owner, house cleaner, and everyone around is a crook and be safe under certain conditions. The evaluations of the conditions of a Hotel comes with experience, however I could make a rather large form of questions that could be completed by about anyone that would explain the rooms. Then I would just have to overcome the natural bias tendency of person to prioritize comfort about safety and logic.

This is what a guidebook writer does, figure out what is best, and I hope tells us, however only about 80 percent are good at this. That is a high percentage and is very good. The still tell me restaurants, and I never read it. I choose who cooks for me.

All this to make a decision, should I collect information on hotels? I need the forms, this is the problem. It takes ton of time to make a very comprehensive form, and because I am spending so much time on many small issues like money, transportation, or the big one, learning French, I am lost to collect what I do naturally by instinct. It is my nature to stay safe, plus be an alpha male. I see an alpha male as surveying the situation, then seeing if it safe for my under me persons.

I am dealing with these issues in many a sundry ways, I will mix and match, in hopefully a successful manner, and if not, not real important, however I will mix and match all the ways of collecting information, then accumulate on pages.


Ivory Coast Hotel Information


Aboisso Ivory Coast on River

Aboisso Ivory Coast
August 6, 2006, 2:39 AM

Good points and not so exciting points about this place, the city is located on a river, which appears to be swollen and gushing with water. It is August of 2006; it is in the Northern Hemisphere this is not winters snow water coming down this river. It has been raining a lot; I guess it is rainy season. I do not pay attention to this type of thing much, as rainy season, winter season, tourist season all seem the same to me in the tropical places of the planet. Sometimes I carry an umbrella, which is about the only difference, a rainy season does not mean often it really rains all the day

My room in the Hotel Bemosso is exactly what I would expect, and even better than what I expect outside the tourist bubble. I suspect it may be inside, however the war or conflicts here in this country for the last few years has brought the casual tourism to a stop. The Hotel is three floors I think and definitely is not full, it was Saturday Night last night, this place could or should have been busier, even if only couples here for boom boom.

I am happily back on Hobo budget at 2500 CFA per night or 5 dollars U.S., I am not happy about the bank or internet situation in this town. I am told in Bonoua a city I past there is Internet. The level of living is about the same as the Anciem Bassam area or Carte France, however now there is no bank or internet. I saw along the road homes built of clay with trees limb reinforcement. I know it drops a level down on building construction from the concrete of the town of Aboisso to the clay type construction.

I have seen a few maybe Foreigners here, I think they speak French, hard to say, I was not inclined to go and talk with them, I guess I am French timid yet. There are I think some Lebanese store here, therefore a Lebanese person in some circumstances, could be what I am saying is a Foreigner, I guess I am saying a Foreigner is a person that is not living here. I would normally say traveler, however I have not seen any travelers. Only persons working for NGO’s, United Nations, French Military, Oil Companies, Missionaries, have just plain normal tourism seem to be a no. I on the other hand came to West Africa at the end of summer. Not the high season for Europe to escape the heat, although many countries in Europe do not work in August and go on a long vacation month.


Aboisso Ivory Coast