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Ivory Coast Friends Take Care of Me

2010-10-03 00:40:42

Ivory Coast Friends Take Care of Me
My computer cord broke this week, this week; my Ivory Coast friends helped me find a new one, while I read my book at the beach.

"Behind every great man is a woman doing all the work."
- Epigraph made up by me for illustration… hehehe

When I first started traveling, I would come down out of a bus, and many people would rush up to me, wanting to carry my bag. I think for maybe 10 years, I said,
"I will carry my own bag."
Now, I realize how silly and stupid I was for so many years, what was wrong with me, why would a person deny another person a job?

I paid this man one dollar to carry my bag 100 yards or meter to the taxi. I have stopped feeling guilty for employing people.
Bellhops and Porters

Grand Bassam, Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa --- Sunday, October 3, 2010


Luxuries we need to learn to accept in life.
I am 54 years old, and never married, in the last 34 years of my life, almost all my friends have been married and divorced. Many of the men will say to me,
"I am never getting married to again,"
I will say,
"No, you need a mother; you will be married within the next year."

What is wrong with me, why have I never been married, maybe the opposite reason is the problem; I refused to allow anyone to take care of me. I remember the tears in the eyes, the sadness on the face of one former girlfriend when she said to me,
"You do not need me."

Well, yesterday my computer cord broke, without electricity this computer quickly become worthless. I walked down to the internet café, my new group of Ivory Coast friends all looked at the computer. The manager called Ebenezer who also had a HP computer, he walked up, dressed in white Islamic clothing, it was Friday, and he had a laptop with him. We tried his cord and realize the problem was the cord. Ebenezer says to me,
"Do you want me to fix the cord?"
I said
"Sure, and he loans me his cord for the night, and walks away."

Now, who would think a person could repair one of them black boxes on the cord of a laptop computer. Well, I knew it was possible; a man in Peru did it for me for three dollars about seven years ago.

Ebenezer calls me the next morning at 7:30; he stops at my hotel,
"Your cord is broke, it cannot be fixed."
In French, this is something like
"Gah TAY"

I do not know how to spell the word in French, I know it means broken, I also know the Air Conditioner in my room is "Gah TAY," and my room is discounted because I have just a fan.

Well, Ebenezer travels by Peugeot station wagon taxi to the city of Abidjan, a large dusty, overpopulated city here in Ivory Coast an hour from here. He goes to some unknown store, buys me a new Hewlett Packard cord for my laptop and come back about seven hours later.

I had already given him 10 Dollars, I offered another 10 Dollars and he said,
"No, you paid for transportation."

I am holding a 5000 CFA Note in my hand, about 10 Dollars USD, I think to myself, wow, these people are exceptionally friendly, refusing money is not normal.

Accepting help along the way, accepting some of the luxuries of life can be difficult, many people make a wife or husband into a slave, and one day the slave divorces them. There is a give and take in life, a quid pro quo between friends, when there is justice and fairness, this is when we have a family, and maybe we should call this the family of man.

Ebenezer felt great pride in his work, he tells me upon leaving, if you have any other problems to just call him on the telephone.

I will take care of you, if you take care of me, I know life is good.

I sat around yesterday, talking with a group of Ivory Coast friends who were playing scrabble in French. It is strange how Ivory Coast people feel rich to me, and the people from the USA seem poor. Please do not complicate life, truly, life is simple, if we do not try to micromanage every moment and sit back and enjoy the simplicity of life. As many of you know, I avoid people who say to me, "I am too busy…"

Ivory Coast Friends Take Care of Me