Saint-Louis is at the northern border of Senegal. It’s scenically located on two narrow parallel islands between the mainland and the Atlantic. A lot of colonial architecture has survived here, although sometimes crumbling. It gives the city charm, something that the utilitarian downtown of the capital Dakar lacks completely. It’s also quite clean, only the beach facing the Atlantic has a lot of garbage.

Talked to a muslim theologist for a long time, sitting on the beach. He used to go out fishing in one of those painted pirogues, but that’s hard work and he can no longer do that. I learned that the local word for “boat” is “gal” and Senegal means boat people, although a quick check on Wikipedia casts doubt on that theory. Friendly man.

Still, it’s a raw place. There are crowds of small children begging on the streets who are not easily dissuaded. Booths at the river sell unpackaged fish and meat. I saw a bloody skinned horse head being heaved into the trunk of a car, as is. Bon appetit.