Posted tagged ‘Niamey’

“I’ve just been bitten on the neck by a vampire… mosquito. Does that mean that when the night comes I will rise and be annoying?”

November 5, 2017

Outside is dark, damp and cloudy. A wind blows every now and then and adds to the misery of the day. My heat went on during the night. It must have been really cold as the thermostat is set at 65˚. Before I had pets, I used to keep it set at 62˚ at night, but that’s too cold for Gracie and Maddie. I found that out when I patted them. Their ears and their body fur were cold. That’s why the heat is higher.

Last night, Gracie was panting so much I kept waking up. I did the food, treat, water thing, and she still was panting and moving around. I finally fell asleep around four. When I woke up, Gracie was in the middle of the couch lying right beside me, and my legs were bent to accommodate her. It was another bad back this morning. She, of course, is now sleeping soundly. I am tempted to keep waking her up, but that’s a human response she wouldn’t understand. Besides, she’d just go to her crate and sleep, probably snore too just to drive me crazy.

Even though all the stores are now opened on Sunday just like every other day, I still have a bit of solemnity for the day probably leftover from when I was a kid. I don’t big time shop on Sundays, and I tend to stay close to home. I watch a little TV, usually football, and I often nap. I honor Sunday as a day of rest.

I was browsing through youtube the other night looking for something to watch. I noticed the film choice of Thousand Plane Raid. Seeing that zoomed me right back to Africa but to Niamey, Niger this time, not Ghana. It was Christmas vacation, and I was traveling with a couple of friends. The trip didn’t go as planned, but trips seldom do in Africa. The bus broke down twice. Each time, we had to wait for the driver’s assistant to hitch back to Ougadougou for parts. That put us way behind time so we had to stop for the night at a post office for which the bus carried mail. The night was freezing. It was harmattan time and we were closer to the desert than in Ghana. I had only a piece of cloth to keep me warm, and it didn’t. Anyway, by the time we got to Niamey, I had defrosted. We stayed at the Peace Corps hostel. In those days U.S. embassies showed movies on Saturday nights. We found out where and went to the screening. Yup, it was Thousand Plane Raid. You don’t need to know any more about the movie. The title is the whole plot. That night was the worst. The movie was shown in an open room of sorts with 4 low concrete walls and no screens.  I was eaten alive by mosquitos bigger than my hand. They mimicked the movie and dive bombed in groups to attack me. I think I left before the end of the movie, but I was so woozy from loss of blood my memories just blurred. I only remember the name of the move and the hordes of mosquitos.

“Life is like a B-movie. You don’t want to leave in the middle of it but you don’t want to see it again.”

June 23, 2012


Today is cloudy and only 71°. I’ve put the screens in the doors and opened the windows. After three days of the AC and isolation, the world is back all around me. I can hear the neighbors next door chatting on their deck, lawnmowers, cars and voices from down the street. The breeze from the windows is a delight and welcomed after the horrific heat of the last three days. It will be in the 60’s tonight and by Tuesday down to the 50’s. Gracie isn’t even panting.

The world is in danger of a new ice age on syfi because of volcanic eruptions in Iceland, but an ice age mightn’t be all that bad an idea as alien insects will be by later, and the cold might deter them from world domination. Today is disaster/bug day on syfi all leading up to an earthquake unleashing monstrous spiders on New Orleans in tonight’s movie. Where’s the popcorn?

It won’t be long before the deck movies start. My friends have never seen Ferris Bueller so it will be the first movie. After that, I’m in a quandary. My taste is different, and I have no ideas as to which movies they’d find entertaining. I struck out last year a few times, but I do have some musicals, not to my liking, but I can sit through most movies as long as I have popcorn and nonpareils. I’m thinking West Side Story which is the one musical I actually like.

In Ghana, the Hotel d’Bull in Bolga, used to show movies on the white wall in the courtyard. I always bought super seats for about a quarter and sat on roof  which had patio chairs and tables. I ate kabobs, mostly beef but a few liver, and saw really old movies: American westerns and Indian movies, pre-Bollywood but still filled with singing. When I went to Accra, I’d always go to the movies. West Side Story was one of the films I saw. Is Paris Burning and The Thomas Crown Affair were a couple more. They too were old but at least were in color. The theaters had seats you placed wherever you wanted, and the screen was outside. If it rained, you picked up your seat, moved to the overhang  and continued watching.

When I traveled in other countries during school vacations, most American embassies had a movie night. I remember being eaten alive by mosquitoes in Niamey, Niger while I was watching a really bad WWII movie, but my standards back then were pretty different based on the rarity of movies. I’d watch just about anything.

Now that I’m thinking about it, my taste hasn’t really changed all that much.  Nothing better than a B movie to while away the day!


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