Normally the month of April is the most difficult in Burkina in terms of weather. The temperatures are close to 40 oC and the humidity is rising. It seems that this type of weather has come early. Even with a welcome rain last Monday, the temperature at night did not go down below 30 ̊C.

This period is also when there is the maximum need for electricity. Since the supply does not always match the demand, we have almost every day some power cuts (from 2 to 6 hours). Recently also, the water has started to be a problem. The news we have from the capital Ouagadougou is that it is even worse there. When the money does not go to where it is supposed to………

Adventure in our street

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On Tuesday, Eugenie wanted to go out to do some shopping. When she was backing out the car, she saw people running away from tear gas in the street. She went back inside and called me. I came back home from the office. A bit further down our street is the office of the cotton farmers union. This union is the intermediary between the powerful cotton company Sofitex and the farmers.

Since the eviction of the president of Burkina in October last year, a lot of the managers of state companies and large unions are contested. In this case farmers want the president of their union out of office. The struggle has started already end of last year. In January a large demonstration was held in Bobo Dioulasso asking for his resignation. The farmers have a long list of questions: how can he afford to buy large properties, luxury cars on the salary of president of the union. In addition when it is time to negotiate the price of the cotton with Sofitex, he goes alone….

Last Tuesday, farmers came to the office of the union again to ask him to resign. The first group was received by the police with tear gas. More farmers were coming and a second charge of the police chased the people away. At this time about 15 people took refuge in our garden. The police was looking around and even went into some houses. When they found people they were really rough with them without reason. We hid the people at the back of the house. Only in the middle of the afternoon we let them go one by one, the police was still looking around.

Just a bit of stress for us, but shame on the police.

Exploring remote area of the village of Fina

17 years ago I went with some villagers to an area of this village where there was a spring which was giving water the whole year.

blog 2015-03-29 2This area could be a place to develop gardening.

The area of the spring is supposed to be protected. Large trees have grown there. Unfortunately some farmers are starting to cut or burn some to have some place to grow vegetables.


blog 2015-03-29 3It has not rained since October 2014, but there is still water running out of the woods.


 Few farmers are starting to take advantage of this water. Below one of those who is growing tomatoes.

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This zone has definitely some potential, but it needs a strong leadership in order to make sure that the available resources (land, water) are not quickly depleted.

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In the wood, the roots of the fig trees have a strange look.

Birds

Many birds seen this week

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Some kind of turtle dove (sorte de tourterelle) Western Plaintain eater (Touraco gris)

blog 2015-03-29 8Shining drongo (drongo brillant)

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Roller from Abyssinia (Rollier d’Abissinie) Black kite (Milan noir)

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Roller fighting the black kite away from his nest.

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White headed lapwing (vanneau front blanc)

Baobab tree with many hives

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Citations of the week

On ne désire pas les choses parce qu’elles sont belles, mais c’est parce qu’on les désire qu’elles sont belles.
You do not want things because they are beautiful, but it is because we wish them that they are beautiful.
~ Baruch Spinoza

N’oublions pas que les petites émotions sont les grands capitaines de nos vies et qu’à celles-là nous y obéissons sans le savoir.
Let us not forget that small emotions are the great captains of our lives and it is to those ones that we obey without realizing it.
~ Vincent Van Gogh

Hope you enjoy the blogs,

Amitiés,

Hervé