Tuesday, 15:00

We’re in a high-altitude Geordie nightclub, 30000ft above West Africa as I write this. Karaoke refrains ring out, distracting from the turbulence. The flight consists of mainly sun-starved British tourists, plus some native West Africans, some in traditional dress. And of course, 3 tired genomics conference travellers: myself, George Weinstock from Washington University, and Tiffany-Marie Williams from Baylor College of Medicine. Despite a 5:30am start, spirits are high. The flight, minus our diversion via Manchester will take 6 hours in total, meaning we go South long enough for the average temperature to raise at least 20 degrees centrigrade to 31 degrees.

We are hoping to be met off the plane by Martin Antonio, our host from the the MRC Gambia and an ex-students of Mark. He has invited us round for a traditional Gambian dinner. The guidebook states that a traditional meal will be served in pots which are passed around the guests who are seated. Each person dips in (strictly using the right hand) with some bread and passes it on. I have no idea whether this will be the case, or whether we are in for a more Western experience.

It looks like we will be staying in the MRC Gambia compound as the African Village hotel we had booked is apparently “below standard”. Shame, as the guide book promised a pool-bar, but I am sure we will make up for it in other ways…

"Hamburg International" - no, neither have I
"Hamburg International" - no, neither have I
George contemplates the Geordies
George contemplates the Geordies
Indiana Jones style red line
Indiana Jones style red line

3 thoughts on “”

  1. It is similar to St. Lucia, but it is much significantly less developed in both the tourist areas and the living areas, from what I can see. Being in the MRC campus gives you quite a different perspective than I imagine a tourist would get. On Monday we go “up country” to see where the villagers live, which I expect will be an eye-opener…

  2. significantly less developed than St Lucia..OMG
    …dont know what thick and thin films mean but make sure you are covered up after sundown – still the best prohylaxis against biting insects.Sorry about the headache. take it easy.
    xxx

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