Posts tagged: Afrika

Africa summary

By , 2018. April 14. Saturday 11:34

Namibia vandorboy-89African Summary

Mainly I write about the society, because the tourist places and safaris are well advertised in the media, so I don’t have to talk about them. Traveling as a backpacker in Africa is not typical because Africa is expensive so very few people come here.   And if they come they pay for the safari, taking them place to place to see wildlife and waterfalls, so they don’t mix with local folks, they don’t overnight with local people, so generally saying those people don’t know what it means to be in Africa.

The translation done by google translator, so it is not the best to read in english. If u r a Hungarian, use the Hungarian version.

I hitchhiked around 10 countries– S. Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi and to East Africa – Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya in 7 months period, so I have many experiences to share. When I mention Africa I refer these countries. There is huge diversity of culture in these areas, but I found some typical characters, attitudes, backgrounds, I wanted to point out in my writings. Continue reading 'Africa summary'»

Africa in general 3.

By , 2015. June 22. Monday 00:04

Africa in outline 3

 Africa in general

I have already wrote a big summary about Afrika, but now I am going to tell about the western part’s characteristics.

(What is) like the life?

I usually ask people if what they do in their free time, what they like? They like watching movies – they say. And what kind of films? Nigerian. And why? Because it is told there what like is the life! Tell me an example, please. For example how you can find out if your husband cheats on you and so on.




So they can see how it feels when their best friend betrays and robs them, causes them difficulties. Well, Nigeria is a good school for life. Life is like this there, accordingly it is the same anywhere else in Africa. Hard world.


It is also happend at my host family in Burkina Faso that they gave advancement to the master who naturally disappeared after that and caused them difficulties. In this way roof will never be on the house. ’Neither money, neither beize’, ( I mean: roof.)  as the hungarian proverb says.


Nigerians are not liked either, here in Gambia, because they commit crime, they decieve

people. However everyone admits that they are very smart and fast. Either I do.




Nigeria in a little traffic



Foreign teachers are mainly imported to Gambia. They come here alone to work to get free from their family. So they don’t have to support their whole family i.e. other 20 relatives, who do nothing. However if a Gambian undertook this (teacher) position he would have to support that 20 people in his family because he couldn’t tell a lie at home that he doesn’t get enought money, he spends it for renting a flat etc.,. Since they see how much he recieves.. the village is small. But the salary is not enought for that 20 people. So rather they don’t go to work as a teacher. It is an interresting way of thinking whatever happens. If I won’t get into a better situation why shoud I sweat for the rest lazy pople?




Guinea-Bissau – waiting for water in thecapital city



One of the family members used to be a police officer who explained the letters of the word „police” this way: „polite, obedient, loyal, intelligent, courtesy, efficient”. I whis it would be like this.


In general we deal with the dark side of the colonization, however if we see it from the europeans’ point of view there were a civilizational sense of mission in the Europeans and they go there with their own value system f.e. to Africa. They thought, they supposed that Africa waits for evangelism so they tried to naturalize such a structure there what was strange to the local culture. There is room for debate if it was good or bad…but time may have proved their right, as education is the only way out from poverty in Africa today.

I gave a lecture with slide-projector in Gambia



If do they need to have education, more comfort, healthcare system, clear water, less epidemic?


Order? So there is given less possibility for the „vendetta”-type blood-feud. Anyway there is enought place for the vengeance in their legends and in their everyday life untill today.



Ultimately I borrowed a school book and there was asked to pay attenction of „beware of book piracy” on its reverse side.

Chiken is on the road – Gambia



But let’s tell that, if someone bought a false one how does he/she get to know about this warning? Or if the warning is also on it, it is a good imitation.


Conversely it fulfills its original function in theory because you (can) decide if you want it like this or not. How it is questionable for me, too, because a little photo is attached to their book titled Social and environmantal study, which tries to teach the north-south direction, but this photo interpretes badly the text, so we shouldn’t wonder that they won’t have a clue about the north and south.


Therefore the problem is not caused by the piratical edition but the book was written poorly originally.


And I don’t want to show further again but if neither the author, nor the teacher knows it, what comes out of that??? So that’s all that there is, what we can see, if we go beyond the surface and the stereotypes.


Senegal – scene in the kitchen


Usually the students don’t get homework but in turn once a family memeber came home, he/she got the task to collect all presidens and capitals of 30 countries (nem akarok nagyon beleszólni, de esetleg meg lehetne említeni, hogy afrikai vagy európai országokra gondolsz..). I understand the latter but the leadears are totally unnecessary, that doesn’t add anything to their knowledge, when even they haven’t got a clue about where Europe is situated. There are taught needless „grains of sand”, that is endless. This is unnecessary and impossible. Instead they should learn about the desert’s laws, characteristics. Well that’s all about it.




Model for big familie


Family, kids

I experienced this in several places that the parents are never together with their children, don’t play and I didn’t either see the warm relation between men and women, that they would huddle up against, perphaps they would hug each other. Therefore I looked for public opinions about its reason. More people admitted this but only one person succeded to say reasons, when I asked about it. He/she told if you play with them, he/she meant with the children, the other people thinks they are silly.

Going to the church



According to the other reason if you degrade to the children you won’t be respected as a parent. They conceived it that usually the grandmother acts the part of person, who takes care of the children. Well, it is interresting…


The grandmother cooks, washes the cloths, feeds. The grandfather disciplines so he will be the authority in the family. In turn they achives that the kids are going to fear (and respect) from their father. So violence – respect – fearness… with this I may have described the modern political and social structure of Africa. It is quite rough…



Coming of Islam

Anyway I know that the islam arrived here with the merchants at first but it follows they gain economical power, after that they worn themselves into political power to. Then the next step is that they displace the old leaders and they rises to power. Generally it happens in the following way: they state about the cheef, the boss, he wanted to kill them. Therefore they declare dzsihad against him and burn everything around him, because now they own not just the econiomical, but the religious support as well to execute this. Compared to this, Europeans just carried slaves at the very start, they didn’t encroached, they even didn’t send missionaries.


Anyway the coming of islam was also helped at the end of the 11th century, that they gained economical power by the trade. Therefore the people started to close, to believe in the islam religion’s supernatural power, that makes people wealthier. Finally they also reimbursed (it comes again I have already written that they adopt religion because of interest).

Dzsudzsu magic close to the body, Gambia


So, I usually ask people about the colonization, f.e. did it ever have a positive effect? In genreral they say yes to the education because before there wasn’t education at all. But lots of people also criticize it. They say that Europeans created it only for the colonizer bureaucrats have local reinforcements, f.e. writer.


Now I would transale it as they educated for the reason locals have a job.


As other positice affect was told that the country became international so it got a view for other cultures, other technical civilizations.



Benin, no for the slavery



Anyway if we take a look to the slavery objectively, it had excisted before on local level, too. The neighbour tribes’ and villages’ residents were forced to be slave, they have them worked on the lands generally. Women were raped, animals were sent away, men were killed. This was the situation before the white people arrived. So there was nothing new in this, just that, they were taken into an unkown country.


I just add to this that now the same thing is happening. They are in the same slavery, just it is us who knocks on the frontdoor of the factory. In the point of Africa they try to  knock into Europe, catch up us, even to get to an unkown land. They sell themselves and work day and night for little money, that it is still better than the uncertain future and exposure to permanent danger at home. However they don’t confess it in this context.


Well, as I read their history book, it is written that they had evolved states long before the colonization, too. The „chef-system” was born with the administration, so the „boss structure”, what reportedly operated wonderfully. But then there is only one question I have. If 50 years ago, when these african countries achived their independece, why didn’t they returend to this wonderful system?




Africa needs support?

Education, history

The missionaries appeared only after the slavery trade ended. They purchased land, built schools, so in any way we swear at this system, there were people who got energy into Africa – let’s says it like that – to make it suitable for the existance in the new structure.


The bosses have to be payed down to send their kids to school! It is absurd! But this tumbled around 1846, because the bosses usually sent someone else indstead of their own children, becuase they were afraid of killing them by the white people.

Gambia – the elections is the get-out?


They weren’t just taugth to write and read by the missionaries but embroidery, too. The monks took care about the poor and the sick people in their residual free time as well. So they didn’ just teach writing and maths but also practical things! And now they throw this to our head? If they had learnt that before Africa wouldn’t be in a situation like this today.


There were some taboos in their old systems such as the women shouldn’t eat black pigeons because they won’t have milk. Anything they did on Saturday they had to repeat. However I guess these habits can be new if they think about days.


They don’t call anyone loudly at nigth because the bad ghosts get to know that person’s name and they will haunt him/her.



Can the youth make change?


So the name has always had magical power. If someone owns the name he/she owns that person, too. That’s the reason that everyone’s name is secret when he/she gets it. By the magic’s appearance in Europe, the insider people had also got an own secret name with. And if somonene answered for the calling of this secret name he/she surely were going to die.



In Western Africa is typical that people vistit the „marabu”, so the local woodoo saman to ask curse for their displeased acquaintances. It doesn’t matter if that person is poor, the main thing is he/she shouldn’t succeed what he/she is doing etc. The woodoo works, that’s why Africa is poor. It is interresting for me why they don’t ask well-being for themselves instead, why they ask bad for others.. this tells a lot about their culture.




New Africa? The money would solve the problems? No!


So than you shouldn’t care about others are OK as well if I am OK too, so it wouldn’t be disturbing. So it seems the base turn of mind is that we degrade people around us. Of course it is not only true in Africa.


Talismans, curing

The marabus, let’s tell the samans, creat the so called „dzsodzso”. These are generally crops packed in goatskin or islamic texts because of extension of this religion. So they were quasi talismans what people kept around their waist or arms and this protected and cured them if it was needed.


But these are the latest ones, so not the traditionals but they were samans of the islam.


For example, my host’s sister suffered from anemia and she couldn’t be cured by the western methods. So she visited a traditional saman who bathed her and prepared her a medicine. Of course she got worse, therefore she had to sit into boiled water. This helped, so finally she recovered.


There also were taboos such as it is banned to use wooden tooth-cleaner during the night, at a meeting or at sunset. It is also banned to frighten the kids because they are usually be collected by slave collectors during this.



Gambia, remedy



There were also a tribe where it was banned to touch an aligator. Well, I am curious about if who tends to palpate them.. but it is obvious these are quasi statute books and they regular the cohabitation. They are in taboo form because in this way superstitious people are going to observe the rules.  The true is they don’t really care with common sense.


In South Africa, if someone wants to cure himself from AIDS he has to rape a virgin girl, or to eat albinos in Tanzania.. But why them? Why is it easear to kill someone instead of putting up a condom? In Congo you need to eat pigmies for this wonderful healing. Madness! I am telling it serously.


Senegal, albino man, but why them?



But the only thing I cannot understand why everyone continues to do these habits despite noone gets better from the AIDS sickness? Why? Isn’t the stupidity immortal? Not even here.




(Magyar) Mauritánia – a lepukkant Maghreb

By , 2014. April 14. Monday 11:19

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Ethiopia – cultures and tribes

By , 2013. May 20. Monday 11:29

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African characterology

By , 2012. March 13. Tuesday 22:13

Africa Characterology – for Beginners and Advanced


            The Life and a Little Bit of Characterology – or Africa for the one with strong nerves and advanced levels:

the middle class’ house here are crowded with huge armchairs and furniture of the ’70s.  It feels like grandma’s house, stuffs, teddy bears, plates, lace-works. Besides these the kitchen is too empty. Day by day they buy a little bit of oil, a little bit of rice, corn, beans and sugar. Women spend their days washing clothes, dishes and in the army they spend it with uninterrupted cleaning the same way they used to do it at home. Most of the time they’re capable of travelling home from the city only to wash their teeth because they consider it very important how the outside word sees them. But they don’t spend to much energy for having an operative tap in the kitchen, a good clench, water or a tack in the bathroom where you can hang your clothes.

            The place of the clench is there but the clench is missing. At the TV you can see mostly talk-shows. If by mistake there is a movie per week, it is recommended the whole previous week and even three minutes before the movie they’re screening short intros followed by 3 minutes of commercials. In Africa the soap operas imported from Nigeria are keeping the people in front of the television. These are also the main theme at the kitchen table discussions. In the news we can here the motivating speeches of politicians. It seems that not even this unanimous program is attracting people to books. If someone wants to start a failed bussines it should open a book store in Africa. Not even the schools have books and what is more, children graduate high school without ever having a book. As my discertion, it is a serious symptom if not even a college graduate has some books on its shelf.

Although a borning civilization this one is dissapearing the same way the interest for the world is. Okay, the “How to get rich at any price” opens their eyes and ears but not their knowledge. People just exist but the problem is they’re not in the right place. New times, old songs. I don’t mean the music but the mentality I’ve talked about so much. They want jeeps and modern life but all these without (efficient) work. They want modern life’s achievments (car, house, restaurant, beer) with the old way of life (i do nothing). They do nothing to get things, they only expect because they deserve to get because they are Mandela/Nyerere etc. At least they are free, I mean they think they’re free but their limitation is even higher than before. The challenge of the new world is here, they want it but they don’t know it. They struggle with this now.

What’s for sure this will last more than two generations. Sometimes I’ve met brilliant minds who are able to think in the European way but unfortunately they are just islands because anything they want to change about this situation it is too far.  In the circle of college graduates only 0.01% can think and plan efficiently, understand the problems, observe the situation and solve it  – this is what people with a diploma said during some discussions. Skills can not develop because of the conditions which surrounds them from their childhood: lack of toys, care and posing problems. At the school they’re made to understand, teaching them the answers like they are some parrots and not letting space for the new songs. Their knowledge is boxed like this forever. This is more than just limitation. It is only good luck if someone has the opportunity to go to Europe and see that there are other ways of solving the problems and working. It is a huge waste of energy for those few who try to maintain a project. They work only until they get foreign money because inside the borders not just that people don’t support them but they don’t even understand their mentality. From this point only the enthusiasm could hold the case, but as we know this does not exist in Africa. Here the only motivation is money. If someone does something does it for interest. Money: this is new, this is prefered.

            Ideas? These doesn’t exist, they sell them during elections. Exactly, their choice for the future, for their future. But slowly there is nothing more to sell. Work is missing from the labor force, crops are missing from their soil. Africa understands only what is necessary when it sees the whip. Thinking away is hopeless. They are stocked in the present.

            There were situations when someone tried to show an example thinking this is the last thing Africans need. All this ended with the man being robbed and outcasted. After this the few enthusiastic person automatically segregated because they have realized that in their countries the situation is hopeless. They started to care only for themselves. No combinations with the others. This is how intellectual islands exist, if have the possibility they send their children to study in foreign countries or private schools  where (good) teachers come from foreign countries. And when they become leaders of course they don’t care of the people anymore because those already robbed and outcasted them. They live here, but live their own way. Because they don’t trust their own system (why would they trust it?) even their money goes to some other countries.

            This is also a problem, the things that we got used to during the decades – education, mentality example – here is missing. Everything has its roots in education. They need motivation to learn, to want to learn! In the childhood we only have motivation from parents and society but of course this is specific only for those few from the “islands”. It is also hard when a white family adopts an african, as a friend of mine did. You can’t erase the past (and let’s don’t even talk about the old mentality). Generations are needed to erase the past and reach the changes like the enthusiasm for work or even understanding the democracy. It’s a strong teacher the one who uses (and understands) old examples to create the new way of thinking for these children. This kind of teacher is one in a million. But why the attitudes of using coca-cola were so easy to learn??

            During my travels and hitchhiking I’ve met a lot of people who studied or saw Europe and you can easily observe that they are different. The eaxemple they have seen, even if its human side is not very acceptable, but it is the result of infrastructure and the standard of living. They return to Africa beliving there are other ways of doing things (better, faster, efficiently). They fight wih themselves and change their lives at least on a financial level. They get a job more easily, but the inside remains the old, but this doesn’t matter too much. Every day they eat corn flour prepared with water and roasted meat. They fail in the big city life, squat in the toilet, but at least on the level of work (morality) and money something changed in their lives. But what about the others? They will get here or they will not. There’s no need to care about them. They’ve been good until now and it won’t be different from now on neither. Now that there is electricity the music is loud, they have food and have water in the fount. The time between these activities is spent with nothing because they have nothing better to do. From Semmelweis to now there is no need for women to die when they give birth and thanks to the vaccines and the founts built up with foreign money not every second children dies anymore. This way the population = problem grows. But they did not build the infrastructure, the agriculture, industry and the most needed education system. So the situation in Africa is (and will remain) unchanged. Our teams (enthusiastic European volunteers) are fighting but is totally hopeless.

            If you have anything to say I am waiting for your comments.

            What do you think it is different? What are the basics?

             Did I tell something new? What?

            Vandorboy reports right from Honduras

Africa round trip – Namibia, Botswana, 2013 nov.29.

By , 2012. March 13. Tuesday 19:17

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