Archives for category: Togo

At the recent SMA annual meetings, we had a picnic at the amazing new Statue of Christ the Redeemer perched on the cliff top in Défalé with stunning views of the valley below. Rio de Janeiro comes to northern Togo.


Life here alternates between years of high and low mosquito frequency, but one of the best things about returning to Togo this year is that, at least up here on the mountain, there are no mosquitos at all. And if there are none now, there won’t be until May 2019 when the rains start again. Never been known before.
So why did I come down with malaria this morning?
I was quick off the mark with a treatment and am already beginning to feel better.

The peel of an African orange, even a ripe one, is green.

Imagine my surprise then, when Faustin served me an orange orange for lunch today.
Where has it come from? What is it doing here?
And it was an easy peeler.

Three years ago, according to the UN, Togo was the least happy place in the world. But it is the biggest improver in the 2018 World Happiness rankings report, rising 18 places.

Yet here on the ground, people are not noticeably happier or unhappier, and my neighbours and friends spend a lot of their time laughing their heads of.

The Buddhist principle of not killing any sentient being is all very well, but what do you do when you have a coordinated quadruple invasion of ants, termites, stink bugs and scorpions?

At the port in Lomé looking for second hand cars…

Me: This car has a higher mileage than the other one you just showed me.

Salesman: That’s not a problem, I can easily set it to zero for you.


George is three, and is proud of his new responsibility in the Pidassa household. Every evening at sunset, it’s his job, without ever being told, to catch six chickens and put them in the chicken coop. It’s easier for him to do it than anyone else because he’s closer to the ground. It’s great fun racing round the courtyard until all of them are caught. When jobs like that need doing, who needs toys?

Green wood hoopoe

A clear but all too brief sighting of a green wood hoopoe today.

Wikipedia 1000 articles
Celebrations! Today we’ve reached the target we set almost exactly three years ago. The Kabiye Wikipedia now has over 1000 articles in it. Recent additions include Stephen Spielberg, Tornado, Proton, Brain, Neptune, Gupta dynasty. Kabiye Wikipedia has also recently been approved for transfer from the Incubator to the real Wikipedia platform, but please would we translate 100 more interface messages first…

Want to wake up REALLY fast at 5.30 am? Try a scorpion sting. I guess I always knew it would happen eventually. It’s scorpion season here, the first rains send them scurrying indoors. We’ve killed ten in a week, but number 8 got me first. That puts paid to all my plans for today.