Ron's Odyssey

Joined March 2019Living in: Nigeria
  • Day13

    Home at last

    April 1 in Nigeria ⋅ 🌧 32 °C

    Home at last 33hrs after departing Dakar, Senegal. Thanks to Aero contractor for adding an extra unbudgeted day to my trip.

    The trip was approached with a certain amount of trepidation due to the envisaged language barrier. In fact I had earlier planned to go on this trip back in September 2018 but swapped it last minute for Kenya for the same reason. I must say communicating was a major challenge especially with taxi drivers as most didn't understand English. The young professionals however know a bit of cut and join English which they learnt in School.

    Overall I will say the trip was very relaxing being that I spent more time enjoying the beach resort unlike the Kenya trip where I spent 2 days on Mombasa city tour and Tsavo East Safari. Saly didn't have any other attraction beside the beach. The 10 day timing was also very ideal and seems like the optimum duration for any future vacation.
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  • Day13

    At MMA 2 airport for rescheduled flight

    April 1 in Nigeria ⋅ ⛅ 33 °C

    Long checkin queue due to yesterday's cancelled flight.

    Finally checked in. Suitcase was 32Kg, I seem to have acquired an extra 10Kg in Senegal. Had to pay extra luggage fee of N6,000. I hope the flight leaves on time. Bought another Vick Inhaler for N1,950 as against the CAF 650 I paid for the same item in Senegal. Fortunately my cold is almost gone, no more blocked nose, my anti bodies must be in top form as they fought off the flu in 48hrs without any drug.

    My 13:35 rescheduled Aero flight has been posponed over an hour now and no update.

    Finally boarded at 15:35. Landed PH at 16:48
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  • Day12

    Lagos at last

    March 31 in Nigeria ⋅ ☀️ 33 °C

    Landed 3:10pm. Immigration was a breeze ( thru by 3:35pm) although I still don't understand why we need to persons to stamp you back into the country. The first person checks your passport (probably for the exit stamp) and then directs you to the next person who scans your passport and stamps it after. I think the scanner should be able to detect if you had a recent exit record and flag appropriately thus eliminating the need for the additional immigration officer.

    The bags came out pretty fast, by 3:45pm I was out of the airport, the customs officers were more interested in stopping oyibos so nobody disturbed me. Got a car hire for N3,000 to the new domestic terminal.

    Serious road construction ongoing on the airport road, a fly over is being built to ease flow of traffic.

    5.40pm Aero connecting flight to Port Harcourt cancelled. Up Naija. Now I am stuck in Lagos for one night and I was really looking forward to sleeping in my house this evening. Oh well.

    Spent the night at Citiheight hotel Ikeja (N20,000) after changing the cancelled flight to 1:00 PM next day.

    Total flight time from Dakar to Lagos (without the stopover) was 3 hrs 30 mins. Incidentally it was the same plane which brought me from Dakar that also took me from Lome to Lagos and I sat on the same seat 20A
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  • Day12

    Tensed Lome

    March 31 in Togo ⋅ ☀️ 33 °C

    Flight departed Dakar 30mins late. I spent a greater portion of the Dakar to Lome flight sleeping, I hope I didn't snore down the whole plane, not my fault anyway, had only 2hr sleep last night. Lost my Vicks inhailer, it fell between the seats, in the process of trying to find it I bent down and had sudden, painful cramp so I gave up and tried to manage the pain instead.

    Finally arived Lome at 12 noon. Took 10mins to disembark from the plane, another 20mins to get the Lagos boarding pass printed, pass immigration (damaged my watch strap in the process) and arrive at the boarding gate, only to be told the Lagos flight wasn't ready. To add to this Aero sent an SMS message that the Lagos to Port Harcourt flight has been cancelled for operational reasons.

    Boarded the lagos flight at 1pm, flight time to Lagos we are told is 35mins. I kept asking at each point if my luggage from Dakar has been transfered and response given was "Qui". Ok o, so far as I don't hear stories in Lagos... "babu wahala"

    Plane is half empty!
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  • Day12

    Goodbye Senegal

    March 31 in Senegal ⋅ 🌙 19 °C

    Had a lovely dinner of fish & chips last night. Slept at 1am woke up at 3am. Was downstairs at 4am on the dot with the prearranged taxi waiting for me. 31min to the airport from the hotel.

    Had to wait before the Asky check in counter was opened. Was only issued boarding pass to Lome. Asked for the connecting to lagos and was told to get it in lome. Also she forgot to tag the bag for transfer in Lome. I hope my bag arrives with me in Lagos.

    Onboard now flight to Lome 2hrs 55min.
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  • Day11

    Off to Plage du Virage

    March 30 in Senegal ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    My last day in Senegal. For lunch I wasn't prepared to eat hotel food so I consulted google maps for the nearest African restaurant which happened to be restaurant le Xalam at plage du virage. Next challenge how to communicate this to the taxi driver. 1st one didn't understand me. 2nd one pretended he did after I showed him the spelling on google maps, but stopped a few meters ahead for me to show a young chap in a street side store who now pronounced it the right way. I had already negotiated CAF 1,000 with him but he started speaking rapidly in French, I suspected he wanted more money, but I refused and told him we had already agreed but trust taxi drivers when he dropped me off he wanted more money. I just ignored him and walked off.

    Used Google maps to navigate to the Restaurant Le Xalam where I ordered Thiou (white rice with stew and smoked beef chops) CAF 6,000. After the sumptious meal I strolled down to the beach (Plage du Virage). It is quite popular with surfers due to the waves but not regular beach swimmers. Breeze was very cold and I couldn't stay long due to my cold.

    Found AFC (African Fried Chicken) for Uddy although I didn't go in to find out if their chicken taste like KFC's.
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  • Day11

    Leaving Saly

    March 30 in Senegal ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    My 7 days / 6 nights in Saly was very relaxing and refreshing, I spent most of the time on the resort beach just chilling out and enjoying the sea breeze, watching fisher men far off through my binoculars casting their lines and nets, local kids swimming to the canoes parked away from the shore. Touristin sailing boats and small motorosed boats.

    Saly is a good location to relax in, practically no attractio s or significant monument to see. Lots of elderly French citizens own houses here and the hotels are full of them. Non French speakers will find it difficult to communicate here although the locals do make impressive efforts and most understand a few words of French.

    Checked out of thw hotel at 10:05am, my taxi from Dakar was already parked waiting for me. Had to pay a tourist tax of CFA6,000 (CFA 1,000 per day per person)

    Senegal is a very dusty country, the solar panels for the street lights on the express between Thies and Dakar are all covered up in a thick layer of dust.

    Finally back to Onomo Hotel, Dakar (11:45am) with it's strange shower in the room. I wonder which quack designed the room for them. This time around I sent message ahead to be given a room far away from the smelly part of the hotel.

    Came back from Saly witha cold. The cold sea breeze and room AC finally got to me. Bought Vicks inhailer and in the absence of Actified was sold HUMEX a cold relieve drug with too many don'ts, so I decided not to take the drug and just allow my antibodies fight the cold. So far so good.
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  • Day11

    Nightlife

    March 30 in Senegal ⋅ 🌙 20 °C

    My banker friend Moustapha was to meet me up for drinks and show me the nightlife in Saly. We agreed for 11pm, but he later called after midnight that he fell asleep and was too tired to go out. I had already anticipated this when it was midnight and gone out on my own. Visited RDC, Kings and Miami all were practically devoid of people, at 2am I called it a night and went back to the hotel to sleep. Seems Senegalese don't start their night life till around 2 to 3am.

    Highlight of the outing: While seated on a highstool at Kings Club, by the bar sipping my Flag beer, leaning forward to browse, the stool suddenly slid back and in that split second I decided to save my phone by dropping it on the table and landed very hard on my padded back side. Trust naija man. I stood up, set the stool and climbed back up, continuing where I stopped.
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  • Day10

    Bank of Africa & Utile supermarket

    March 29 in Senegal ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

    Got the best exchange rate today 570 at Bank of Africa, Saly. The bank teller was excited to meet a Nigerian, says Nigeria is big and developed and would love to visit Nigeria someday. We exchanged numbers and agreed to meet later at night for drinks.

    Visited Utile supermarket to buy chocolates for the office folks, couldn't find any made in Senegal so had to settle for those imported from France. Wande Coals "My Woman" was playing in the supermarket

    Passed by a construction site and saw an ingenious simple pulley system for sending bucket of cement up to the next floor, our guys back home are still carrying headpans and walking up make shift stairs at construction sites.
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  • Day9

    Dinner at Le Petit Zing

    March 28 in Senegal ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

    Decided to eat out tonight at a joint which advertised meals for CAF 4,000. A 419 strategy to draw in customers. On entering you are presented with a menu with meals above the advertised price and when you enquire for the 4k meal you are shown an unappetizing meal.

    I discovered a very useful feature of Google Translate, by clicking on the camera icon and pointing the camera at the text you want translated, it automatically does character recognision and translates the text for you. Cool eh. If only whatsapp could take a cue, convert text typed in one language upon pressing send into another language and do the reverse for received post.Read more

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