Place

A Flag, a Story and a Nation

One of the first women to ever weave the Naga national flag, Lathon Kemp, passed away on the 5th of January, 2021. The news of her death brings to mind the flag and the very important place it holds in the life of the Nagas. Although, it was hoisted for the first time on the 22nd of March in 1956 in the Parashen-Rengma region, the Nagas believe the flag to have a divine origin and not designed by any mortal. A red, green and yellow rainbow is spread out against a field of blue which represents the sky.

Chatting in the Street Under My Window (1)

It is on this street, which is on the right side of my house, that the window of my room opens. Every morning when I wake up, I look through it mechanically, even if I can't see anything out of the ordinary. It's a quiet street and not very busy, especially in the morning. The house with the mustard-yellow door is one of the oldest in the neighborhood: it was built in the 1970s by a shopkeeper from Gandiol in northern Senegal. The bricks with decorative motifs that were used to build the wall are typical of this period and are now only seen on very old buildings.

A Visit to the Market Place (2)

Maybe the people I met today are not asking themselves all these questions. The awareness messages just ask them to "wear" a mask. At the same time, the Minister of the Interior has issued an order on the wearing of masks and the police are punishing all those who do not respect the measure by making them pay a fine of between 3000 and 6000 CFA. One of my neighbors who goes to the market every day told me that she thinks it's a bit stupid to have to pay such sums when a mask costs between 100 and 300 CFA on each street corner.

A Visit to the Market Place (1)

This morning I was at the marketplace, after more than a week without going out. I was astonished by what I saw: almost everyone (adult, child, woman, man, young, old, buyer, seller, security guard...) had a mask. I was astonished because in social networks (Twitter, Facebook) I keep hearing about "the indiscipline of Senegalese who do not respect the barrier measures, especially the wearing of masks". I personally found it very responsible that everyone has a mask, with a few rare exceptions. Then I am aware that there are all the problems related to the quality of the mask and its use.

Making Life Sustainable During Covid-19 (1)

After more than two months of self-confinement, we went out on 10 May 2020 with the younger ones to buy plants. We went out with a purpose. We decided to set up a small garden in the courtyard of our house. The next few days were very exciting as we collected and transformed many objects that were lying around the house and used them to decorate our plants (tires, empty bottles, etc).

Staying at Home Around a Board Game (2)

Around the meal, I discussed this post (https://bit.ly/3eYutcd) with my family members, our perceptions and interpretations were just as diverse as what I had read in the comments. We did agree on one thing, however: to add "board games" to the list of activities we had drawn up to facilitate confinement. Finally, and after this interesting discussion around the bowl, we chose another game - monopoly, because the Ludo is limited to 4 players. From that day on, the confinement time seemed less long and less boring to us.

Staying at Home Around a Board Game (1)

Today, we have been self- confined for over a month. When I wake up, as I do every morning, I take a little walk on Twitter. Today I came across this tweet from the official account of the First Lady of Senegal, Marième Faye Sall. You can see on the post the sentence « Togg Leen Seen Keur » (stay home in wolof) followed by the hashtag #FaaxasCovid19 (#getoffcovid19). There are also three photos of the first lady, the president and one of their sons, dressed in casual clothes, playing Ludo, a popular board game in Senegal. The comments under this tweet are very diverse.

Covid-19: Reflections from Gao, Mali (2)

La région de Gao au Mali a pris très au sérieux la pandémie covid 19. Toutes les structures sont en campagne de sensibilisation à travers des sketches et des kakemojo. Mais aussi a travers des distributions de gel hydro alcoolique, savon pour se laver les mains et des masques pour se protéger dans des endroits publics. Les structures sont équipées de kit. Le taux de contagion est faible mais des cas sont enregistré. Tout le monde est entrain de fournir l'effort de mettre fin à cette pandémie.

Suivrons des images en cuise d'illustration.

Warding off the virus with Corona Drishti in Chennai, Tamil Nadu

Floor drawings, especially those made by variously connecting a grid of dots using white rice flour powder or paste, are often seen at the entrance of people's homes in Tamil Nadu. Known as the kolam, these designs are typically executed by women as part of early morning household chores and renewed daily as a recurring motif of everyday life. This kolam depicts the coronavirus as the evil eye that will protect, but equally harm, if not heeded.

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