Thursday, April 7, 2011

Malian Homestay Families

Two late additions here of George's host father and mother, who are sort of the Malian version of Phil and Renee:

Host dad, home from work in the tomato field (7 km each way on this bike).  This guy is always cheerful and full of jokes, and despite working dawn to dusk he is never tired.

Host mom and baby Jeneba

George's host father and grandmother dressed in their finest for our departure day.  (Chacka Coulibaly and Jeneba Coulibaly)
 Bintu with her three younger host sisters - from left to right Ma Fitini (which means "Little Ma"), Shata, and Umu. I spent the vast majority of my homestay time with my host sisters and host mom.

 Bintu with host mom (far right, I was named after her), older host sister in-law on the left. The boys lived in my host compound. I guess they would be my host cousins? I don't know their names but one of them once offered George his sling shot so that George could take a turn shooting at the birds in our compound.

 As I mentioned my compound was a bit of a circus. This photo was not staged. From left to right, Fali (Donkey), Saga (Sheep), Tongow (Ducks), Bintu (Anna), Ba (Goat)

View of the compound from my host family's front porch area. My room was directly across from my host family's house...the door to my room was right behind the large tree in the background of the photo.

George's standard lunch at homestay- pretty good by Malian standards: rice with peanut sauce (including a yam, a fish including the head, and a hot pepper).
George's room at homestay- Spartan, but the bedframe is outside for sleeping since the hot season started.  (Margaret, the Hitching Post basement seems like a dreamboat right now.)
Veteran language teacher, Abdoulaye, on break.

Teacher's courtyard with our favorite little boy, who usually doesn't wear pants.
Main street in the village
George and Jeneba (baby sister)
George's host family, including a few neighbor kids.  The family consists of the two brothers at the bottom left, father in the middle, mother standing at the top holding the baby sister, and grandma at the right.
2 Jenebas- generations one and three
George's homestay compound
Practice mural in homestay village for health assignment- The message: wash hands after the field, toilet, and playing outside; and before cooking and eatting.


  1. Absolutely LOVE the photos...thanks for sharing Salim and Bintu. Sounds like you're having a true experience of it! I thoroughly enjoy your writing and seeing a glimpse of your experience - you're a great writer! Glad you're well and enjoying....happy swearing in and becoming official PCVs.

    I was thinking about you guys tonight as I went to a MN-RPCV slideshow and potluck.

    Be well!
    Gina B.

  2. Gina,

    Oh wise RPCV, everyday there are more and more stories I want to compare with your PC experience and questions I want to ask.

    Hope MN is well. Is it starting to get green yet? What a great time of year in MN- when you finally get a break from the snow and cold.

    Hello to Karl and ProV people.