in case you were wondering, the Gambia is awesome and beautiful and all those things you'd really want it to be. including hot. it's pretty hot here, even though we are entering the "cold season." i am already planning on traveling during the hotter months, if i can afford it/get away.
i'm sure many of you have questions, so i'm going to drop some of the things i've learned thus far
-"the" in the gambia is to keep it from getting confused with zambia. if you write me letters (and i hope you will), make sure you put west africa on them, or they will probably go to zambia anyways
-the Banjul airport is not actually in Banjul, but in a coastal area called "the Combos," which is a touristy area and much larger and more developed than Banjul. it is home to one of the country's 3 traffic lights.
-on the way to our staging house (we each move in with a host family next friday) we saw what may have been the President's motorcade. it was several police cars and a hummer, which apparently he enjoys riding around the Gambia in.
-the population of the Gambia is about 1.7 million-and growing.
-we have all been issued cellphones! apparently this is a new peace corps policy. it is very exciting because we get african cellphones with awesome default ringtones and cute logos you can attach to each contact. it can be confusing, though, because there are 35 of us in the staging house with identical cellphones. we are getting creative.
-the Gambia has a new country director coming in with us. he is here to work on a new food safety initiative that can hopefully be used all over the world-and we may get to help him develop it. which will be really exciting, if it all works out.
-our backyard has 2 mango trees (out of season), several lime trees, avacado trees, and banana trees. it is SO COOL.
-tomorrow we are going to a reptile reserve so we can identify dangerous snakes from the region (and hold less dangerous ones)
-i am borrowing a computer and i think the user is getting antsy.
I miss you all! I'll try and add some serious details with my next post!