the morning of the 9th i woke up early and went straight to the school to start the mural. when tayo and ma'asou showed up, i had already made friends with the groundskeeper's family (although the women wound up being really annoying) and has started on the mural.
ma'asou looked bright and happy, munching on a bean sandwich and excited about having taken her first shower in an actual shower (that is, not a bucket bath). we spent the rest of the day until about 1:30 working on the mural. tayo's friend kim, a tostan volunteer, had joined us to help.
we took a break for lunch and i passed out for a nap. when i woke up chris was there! he had just gotten in from dakar. we had an excellent lunch -- ceeb u yapp (rice and meat) -- for gamou. at one point, juli came scampering into the room and shyly greeted me. the girls awkwardly eyed each other until juli left. it was like two kittens meeting for the first time. when juli left i told ma'asou that she could leave and go hang out until we had to work again and she immediatly left the room with a secret smile.
when we had lunch we went back to the mural from 4:45 to 7pm-ish. it wasn't finished but there was no more daylight and i was ready to go home after a day of mural painting which was a bit more difficult than expected because of the goopy, glossy, oil-based paint we were using and the constant throngs of people bugging us.
me, chris, and ma'asou went out to dinner. i had told her about hamburgers the night before and i promised her one. this time i bought her non-carbonated mango juice in a little glass bottle and she loved it. whe she was done, she lovingly rinsed out the bottle and asked me to fill it with water for her to keep. she seemed to really enjoy the hamburger and she and i talked about a picture alphabet book -- translating things into wolof -- and also about kaolack and th evillage and what she wanted to do with her life.
there's talk of her going to kaffrine next year to further her arabic school studies. we're not a very pious family or anything close so i wonder about this decision. i asked her if she wants to go. she said no. i asked her why. she thinks it's too far away. i asked her if she wanted to stay in the village. she shook her head. i asked her where she wants to go. she said, "anywhere." to this, i asked her if she wants to get married (the only way to get "anywhere") and she shook her head. interesting.
i dropped her off at tayo's and told her to go to bed because tomorrow morning i was dropping her off at a neighborhood where our villagers who had come to kaolack for gamou celebrations were to catch a car to go home. she nodded, we departed, chris and i walked back to the house, and i promptly passed out when i got to the house.
the following morning before heading out to the mural, i found out from tayo that ma'asou had not gone to bed (as instructed) but had been invited by her new friend juli to go pray at the mosque in celebration of gamou. so, she was oversleeping -- something i've never seen her do once in hte village. when she woke up, i left tayo and chris to wokr on the mural and carted her to the neighborhood of sam, where she met up with her relatives. sam was nuts -- the post-gamou flurry was insane. it was also pretty crazy to see my villagers outside of the village. i droppd her off, did some greeting, and then bounced so i could finish the moto. as much as i enjoyed having ma'asou around, it was a relief.
we finished the mural at a decent hour, took a bunch of pictures, and then went back to the house. went out to lunch with chris, hawes, jaime, and mark and had a few, well-deserved beers.
the next morning we went again to the mural and wrote the names of the women we had painted and signed it. we were very pleased with it. pictures will come soon...