Back in Africa Day 9: Saturday May 19

It’s game day, and much of the planning we did the last couple of days comes to a head today as we have two games planned…one for 12 year old players in the morning at 10am and one at 4pm for players aged 13-17. As it turns out we probably should’ve scheduled them just the opposite  (for better baseball) as we are expecting several dignitaries including the US Ambassador to Benin Lucy Tamlyn, the Japanese Ambassador and other embassy staff members from both delegations. We roll out early today so we can get to the field in plenty of time, … Continue reading Back in Africa Day 9: Saturday May 19

Back in Africa Day 7: Thursday May 17

It’s been a week since we left home and today we wake up early to the sounds of a  thunderstorm. With the rain pounding the ground below us (we’re on the 3rd floor of our hotel) we watc h and wonder what it’s going to do to the roads around Cotonou that already have severe problems. To no one’s surprise there is urban flooding in many spots with knee deep water on some streets. The rain subsides after about an hour, but the damage has been done. We get off to a flying start. A motorcyclist cuts in front of … Continue reading Back in Africa Day 7: Thursday May 17

Back in Africa Day 6: Wednesday May 16

As we start out today I keep telling Gary that our story in Africa keeps writing itself. Today is no exception. So per usual, we come out of our hotel room to head down for breakfast and we are greeted in the hall by Fernando…and seconds later guess who pops out of the elevator behind him? Of course, it’s Mrs. Abdul’s mom in a long formal African dress (see Day 5 blog entry for further explanation). She’s all set for popping in and out of our lives again today. After breakfast we head out to meet with the president of … Continue reading Back in Africa Day 6: Wednesday May 16

Back in Africa: Day 4, Monday May 14

Today’s the day we get to meet the U.S. Ambassador to Benin, Lucy Tamlyn. Ambassador Tamlyn has been serving in Benin for the past few years and unfortunately had to miss our meeting two years ago when we came to Benin. We get our Sunday-go-to-meetin’ clothes on and head to the fortress on Embassy row known as the United States Embassy. Per usual, no photos allowed so nothing to show you here, but take my word for it, the place is built to withstand serious trouble. Cement base walls reinforced with steel gate fencing surrounds the building. We go through … Continue reading Back in Africa: Day 4, Monday May 14