During our time in Cameroon, we stayed in the Centre and the South of the country. Our journey started -as I have written before- in Yaoundé, then we went on to Kribi (a beautiful little city at the Gulf of Guinea), we drove through the rainforest to Ebolowa and finally traveled to Limbé (a coastal city near Mount Cameroon).
We spent the first 4 days in Yaoundé, Cameroon’s capital, going to different markets, getting to know the way of life of the Cameroonians, eating traditional food, getting sick (we knew it would happen and were prepared…), spending a day at a pool on top of one of Yaoundé’s seven hills and strolling around the “Jardin d’Amoure.”
Joseph showed us his hometown, taking us to all kinds of wonderful and very, very interesting places. You usually take a taxi to go from one place to another, but on our 2nd day we had the luxury of having a chauffeur, Armand, who drove us around all day long.
After a good night’s sleep, our first “African” shower with ice-cold water (my tip for your next Africa trip: you should not leave your towel, your clothes or anything else that you don’t want to get soaking wet in the bathroom; due to the extraordinary African craftsmanship, the entire bathroom will be cleaned while you are showering.) and a few cups of delicious coffee, Valerie, Joseph, Andreas and I sallied out to spend the day in the city.
What impressed me the most on the first day were the colors. You hardly see dark fabrics; almost everybody is wearing beautifully cut dresses with incredible, colorful prints. I found it wonderful and charming to see the way the Cameroonians combined traditional and modern cloths.
It wasn’t easy to enjoy strolling around the markets because of the crowds and the vendors trying to get “les blancs” to come to their market stands. However, the flavors, colors and the variety of the produce were so impressive, extraordinary and so unfamiliar that it was almost too much to take in all at once.
After a few hours we had enough of the crowds and went up to Mont Fébé, one of the 7 hills that Yaoundé was built on, and enjoyed the beautiful view of the city. Leaving all the craziness and business of the markets behind, we used this time to have a cup of coffee, talk and get to know each other a bit more.
The day ended very harmoniously with another delicious meal that Joseph’s sisters prepared for us. Again, the taste of the fish and crabs and even the potatoes was totally different and unfamiliar. Andreas and I LOVED it.
At some point during the afternoon hours, the water was turned off and we were left without this luxury for the next 3 days…
Before going to bed, Andreas and I had to chase a nasty mouse that I discovered on our mosquito net around the room, trying not to giggle too loud in order to not wake the family… We ended up spraying it with a spray we had bought against cockroache