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    [post_date] => 2017-08-15 15:52:56
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-08-15 21:52:56
    [post_content] => 

As requested, I’m sharing the recipe for one of the lunches I cooked with my homestay mom in Temento Samba. She never measured anything so if you try to recreate it, use your best judgement, and don’t forget to taste along the way!

 

Ingredients:

Bissap leaves

Water

White Rice

Whole Chicken

Red Onions

Carrots

Turnips

Vegetable Oil

Black Pepper

Bouillon Seasonings

Salt

Mustard

Tomato Concentrate

Optional: Okra

 

Directions:

  1. Put bissap leaves in a pot and add enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil.

  2. Remove bissap leaves from pot using a strainer ladle and transfer to a separate container. Then, use a hand mixer to purée the tender leaves until a gooey mixture is formed. Add salt and bouillon seasonings to taste. Set aside. *Optional: If okra is available, purée it into this sauce.

  3. Peel the onions, carrots, and turnips. Dice the onions, and chop the carrots and turnips into 1-in matchstick pieces.

  4. In a mortar, crush the black pepper. Then add the chopped onions and more bouillon seasonings, and continue to crush.

  5. Prepare the chicken for cooking, making sure that the meat has been thoroughly cleaned.

  6. Rub the chicken with salt, and then place it in a pot of simmering vegetable oil. Let it cook briefly, just until the outside becomes crispy. Then, remove the meat from the oil, and fry a portion of the onion mix.

  7. After a few minutes, add to the hot oil several cups of water, the rest of the onion mixture, and the chopped carrots and turnips. Also add the chicken back in, and let the pot simmer.

  8. After a little while, add mustard and more bouillon seasonings. Continue to let it simmer.

  9. Then, add an additional 1/2 cup of water along with salt, to taste, and the tomato concentrate. Leave the pot to simmer, removing it only once it has been over heat for a total two hours.

  10. Meanwhile, sort the white rice, making sure to remove any foreign objects. Then, rinse it thoroughly.

  11. Steam the rice, then add it to a pot of water, and let it cook over low heat until the water has been fully absorbed.

  12. Plate the rice in a large platter, lightly cover it in the onion sauce, put the chicken in the middle of the dish, and then distribute the bissap sauce in dollops around the platter. Serve warm.

[post_title] => Aissatou’s Maaro e Gertogal (Rice and Chicken) [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => aissatous-maaro-e-gertogal-rice-and-chicken [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-08-15 15:52:56 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-08-15 21:52:56 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/blog/ [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 644 [name] => SUMMER: Senegal [slug] => summer-2017-senegal [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 644 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 621 [count] => 52 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 0.1 [cat_ID] => 644 [category_count] => 52 [category_description] => [cat_name] => SUMMER: Senegal [category_nicename] => summer-2017-senegal [category_parent] => 621 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2017/summer-2017-senegal/ ) ) [category_links] => SUMMER: Senegal )
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Aissatou’s Maaro e Gertogal (Rice and Chicken)

Lizzie Heffern,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

As requested, I’m sharing the recipe for one of the lunches I cooked with my homestay mom in Temento Samba. She never measured anything so if you try to recreate it, use your best judgement, and don’t forget to taste along the way!   Ingredients: Bissap leaves Water White Rice Whole Chicken Red Onions Carrots […]

Posted On

08/15/17

Author

Lizzie Heffern

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2017-08-15 15:09:15
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-08-15 21:09:15
    [post_content] => 

I’ve spent much of the past ten days processing my month in Senegal; trying to make sense of how I ended up in such a beautiful country, in the arms of the most welcoming hosts, and with the greatest group of co-travelers. I’ve been reflecting on what I want to take away, and there’s one lesson in particular that resonates with me that I learned while living with my host family in Temento Samba.

In the days leading up to this round of homestays, the entire group was anxious, and for good reason. Our instructors told us that our host families would speak only Pulaar, even though until this point we had been learning exclusively Wolof. Before our families picked us up, Samba gave us a “Survival Pulaar” crash course, covering some basic greetings and simple phrases like “Where is the toilet?”, “I want to eat,” and--as I would soon learn to be the most important phrase when living in a Senegalese household--“I am full!”.

The first hour I spent with my family was stressful. Once we got past the basic greetings, I was lost in all other conversation. My mom, dad, and grandmother all continued to talk to me, saying so much, so quickly, but all I could do was stare back at them with confusion.

That evening, two of my family’s friends came to visit. I greeted them in Pulaar, and they returned the greeting, but then they said something I didn't understand: "Yufine?"

I nervously stared at them, racking my brain about what they might be asking me. I frantically flipped through my notebook, trying to find this expression. Yufine?, I thought. I don't think we learned that phrase yet!

The friends looked puzzled too, and one of them finally said to me, “You don’t know ‘fine’?!”

OH, “You fine?”! They’re speaking English!!

I had been so focused on trying to understand Pulaar that I didn’t even recognize my own language.

Not long after, I went to take a shower and was happy to have a few minutes to myself. I filled my bucket of water at the well and then retreated to the fenced-in shower area behind my house. A few minutes later, after I had undressed, I heard a rustling around the corner. Instinctively, I crouched down and covered up, afraid that one of my family members was about to walk in on me. I was relieved, yet still somewhat unsettled, a few seconds later to see that it was only two of the family goats, looking for a drink. They quenched their thirst with my shower water and then eventually wandered away.

A few more of these awkward scenarios played out before the day ended, and I was hyper-aware of how far I was out of my comfort zone. I missed my home in Pennsylvania. I missed electricity, my soft bed, and bathroom doors. Even more, I missed being able to communicate with people.

But as the week went on, I started to settle into life with my new family.

My mom, as any good mother would, made sure I was always full, bathed, and had clean clothes to wear. She fed me entire baguettes for breakfast and would send me off to lessons in the morning with a second hot breakfast to-go. She’d always insist that I take a shower as soon as I got home in the evening. She’d brush and braid my hair, before bed and then again in the morning when it would look too messy for her satisfaction; and one afternoon while I was sitting outside with her, she sent me to my room to change clothes and told me that I needed to wash the ones I was wearing.

My mom also helped me study Pulaar. Every evening we fell into the same routine: After dinner, by the light of my (very dim) headlamp, we’d huddle outside around my notebook, and she would teach me new vocabulary. She started with the parts of the body, pointing to each one, giving me the Pulaar equivalent, waiting for me to write it down, and then telling me to repeat it so she could check my pronunciation. By the end of the week, my notebook was full, and I was writing sideways and in any open white space to keep up with her. She went through different food names, family members, greetings, and even animals, which she taught me by making the animal noises.

The language barrier that had initially made me feel so isolated became less important as we continued to find ways to bond without needing to speak. One morning, I asked if I could help her prepare lunch, and she immediately put me to work. She made sure I saw every ingredient she added and kept motioning for me to take notes and pictures so I wouldn’t forget the steps. Every time a neighbor walked by, my mom, beaming with excitement, would boast about how I was helping her cook that day.

Over the course of the week, I also found ways to bond with my other family members. My five-year-old brother, who initially avoided all interactions with me, started to warm up to my presence. One afternoon, he showed up at my bedroom door holding two toy cars. He gave me one and then sat down on the floor and started playing. We played silently for the most part, with the exception of our attempts to imitate car noises, but I could feel the affection building between us.

My sense of love for my new family grew so quickly and so deep. When I was with them, I no longer thought about the amenities I had in the States. I had something much more meaningful here. For the first time in my life, I experienced what it really meant to find a home away from home.

Now, I’m writing this yak post from my cozy bed in Pennsylvania and can’t help but dream about returning to the place that my former self thought was so uncomfortable. As I prepare to start college next week, where there will be new opportunities to pursue and challenges to overcome, I’m reminding myself of the important lesson that I learned from my homestay in Temento: The most meaningful experiences don’t happen in your comfort zone. The most meaningful experiences, rather, are waiting in the unknown and the uncomfortable. They are waiting where there be dragons.

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Waiting in the Unknown

Lizzie Heffern,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

I’ve spent much of the past ten days processing my month in Senegal; trying to make sense of how I ended up in such a beautiful country, in the arms of the most welcoming hosts, and with the greatest group of co-travelers. I’ve been reflecting on what I want to take away, and there’s one […]

Posted On

08/15/17

Author

Lizzie Heffern

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2017-07-28 14:43:04
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-28 20:43:04
    [post_content] => Dear Family and Friend,

The Senegal group has landed safely at JFK and students are headed for onward flights and parent pick-ups. Wishing everyone a happy reunion with families and friends!

 

-Dragons Administration
    [post_title] => Landed at JFK
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SUMMER: Senegal

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Landed at JFK

Dragons Admin,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

Dear Family and Friend, The Senegal group has landed safely at JFK and students are headed for onward flights and parent pick-ups. Wishing everyone a happy reunion with families and friends!   -Dragons Administration

Posted On

07/28/17

Author

Dragons Admin

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

WP_Post Object
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    [post_author] => 2404
    [post_date] => 2017-07-28 12:57:39
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-28 18:57:39
    [post_content] => 

Yoonu jamm, our dear students, ba beneen yoon inchallah! Peaceful travels, dear students, until we meet next time!

I just returned from the airport where our last student who was travelling independently took off just some minutes ago, on time. I am now sitting with Samba and Mamadou in Yoff, Dakar. We take a deep breath of gratitude and want to express our recognition to all parents and family members who made this experience possible for our students. Thanks to those of you who prepared with them for the trip, were following our adventures over the Yak Board, were accompanying us everyday with their thoughts and prayers, and who are now waiting to take their kids, who have become a little bit ours, too, back into their arms.

As we imagine students falling into their parents and siblings arms on different continents, tired, dusty and tanned, with a sparkle in their eyes and so many stories to tell, we send much love their way, and thank all parents deeply for their trust and confidence.

Dear students, we love you, and wish you all the best for your time ahead!

Jamm ak kheweul, ba beneen yoon inchallah!

Your Instructors

Angelica, Berta & Samba & Mamadou

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Peaceful Travels

Berta - Course Instructor,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

Yoonu jamm, our dear students, ba beneen yoon inchallah! Peaceful travels, dear students, until we meet next time! I just returned from the airport where our last student who was travelling independently took off just some minutes ago, on time. I am now sitting with Samba and Mamadou in Yoff, Dakar. We take a deep breath […]

Posted On

07/28/17

Author

Berta - Course Instructor

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

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    [post_date] => 2017-07-28 09:54:18
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    [post_content] => Dear Family and Friends of the Senegal summer course,

The students are en route home! Those on the group flight are on their way to JFK with Angelica - having boarded earlier today.  Those travelling independently to other destinations are also at the airport or have boarded recently, depending on their flight time.  The group flight to JFK flight is scheduled to arrive in New York at 4:10pm EDT.

Wishing everyone safe travels home!

– Cara Lane-Toomey
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SUMMER: Senegal

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Senegal Students En Route

Dragons Admin,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

Dear Family and Friends of the Senegal summer course, The students are en route home! Those on the group flight are on their way to JFK with Angelica – having boarded earlier today.  Those travelling independently to other destinations are also at the airport or have boarded recently, depending on their flight time.  The group flight to JFK […]

Posted On

07/28/17

Author

Dragons Admin

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

WP_Post Object
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    [ID] => 159595
    [post_author] => 2
    [post_date] => 2017-07-27 08:00:34
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-27 14:00:34
    [post_content] => 

Transference came naturally to our group. Debriefing our time in the community of Ndem on our first evening in Mbacke Kadior, we shared thoughts of looking back, of appreciation, and of taking a step back and making sense of the impressions of the trip.

After a last evening of star gazing while listening to Cheikh Ngom and the Yaaye Falls bluesy guitar Zirk, we spent a last morning of alone-time taking in the smells, views and sounds of the Sahel steppe - enjoying these final moments of the course. We then drove to Toubab Dialaw, to the artsy "Sobo Bade“ hotel on the rocky sea shore for three final days of the Transference phase of the course.

As the end of the course becomes tangible, mixed feelings arise in all of us. Sadness about a coming separation from the group and the country that have became dear to us; gratitude for all the people, places and experiences that have transformed us on our trip; exhaustion from many adventures and a lot of bravery; excitement for the huge impact we are all sure this experience will have on our lives.

The image of a tree offers itself to us as a metaphor. The original intention to go on this course was a seed was planted in each of us, with a potential for growth on many levels. As we watered this seed, with all the experiences in Senegal, it germinated and started developing leaves – curiosity and enthusiasm. Later, branches also grew– new skills – that could support a rich blossom – laughter, tears, questions and realizations. Now, our trees stand in full fruit. Rich, sweet fruit that has ripened through this process : “Happiness”, “Friends”, “Strength”, “Confidence”, “Sense of Community”, “Spirituality”, “Appreciation”, are only a few of the “fruits” students mentioned. What more delicious harvest could one hope for?

 

Thus, we don't “end” here. We go into harvest and we go on nurturing and watering the tree, for the promise of many more and even better harvests so come:)

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A Rich Harvest

Berta - Course Instructor,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

Transference came naturally to our group. Debriefing our time in the community of Ndem on our first evening in Mbacke Kadior, we shared thoughts of looking back, of appreciation, and of taking a step back and making sense of the impressions of the trip. After a last evening of star gazing while listening to Cheikh […]

Posted On

07/27/17

Author

Berta - Course Instructor

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

WP_Post Object
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    [post_author] => 2
    [post_date] => 2017-07-27 07:53:02
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-27 13:53:02
    [post_content] => One way to recognize a place is home is when you know without a doubt that you can always bring friends, and that your family will welcome them with open arms, as guests and as friends to be.

 

That is how I felt when coming into Ndem and Mbacke Kadior – our last two community visits before the Transference phase – with our Dragons course. After an Orientation in the wonderful Sufi-Community in Dène, an urban homestay- and skillbuilding week in Thiès, a week of trekking around the lush and mountainous region of Kédougou and a rural homestay in the southern village of Temanto Samba; our students, now in X-phase, led the “Johns” (us Instructors;-) back up north to the village of Ndem, the community that I have been living with for five years since I moved to Senegal in 2011.

 

Ndem is a village with a successful 30-year history of active community action towards reversing rural exodus and is very accustomed to welcoming visitors. With Fatou D. as a mentor and local facilitator, the students arranged to participate in two workshop with the local artisans cooperative: making jam from “Bissap” flowers, and decorating scarfs with traditional mud-dye.  The studetns also organized a tour of the different infrastructures and institutions set up by the villagers association. In Ndem we had many more discussions about who we are, what are our values, and how we see other countries and their “development status”, etc.etc.

 

From Ndem, we drove to Mbacke Kadior, a historical village in the region of the ancient “Kadior” kingdom to meet the founders of the Ndem community at their new mission in restoring the pilgrimage site and creating an educational institute and an organic farming complex. We get to spend a morning weeding the bean and peanut fields along with the Baye Fall, and students had individual conversations with different people about their Independent Study Project questions.

 

We realized that we started and end this trip in two similar but different spiritual communities – Sufi chanting marking the entry, as well and the farewell to the adventures that were in-between. MaYacines prayers opened our way into Senegal and Serigne Babacars blessings accompany our last days and departure. Both are charismatic and genuinely peaceful spiritual leaders, uniting people from all around Senegal and beyond in the spirit of generosity, service and the inner struggle for our best selves – we couldn't be more protected!
    [post_title] => Coming home with guests
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Coming home with guests

Berta - Course Instructor,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

One way to recognize a place is home is when you know without a doubt that you can always bring friends, and that your family will welcome them with open arms, as guests and as friends to be.   That is how I felt when coming into Ndem and Mbacke Kadior – our last two […]

Posted On

07/27/17

Author

Berta - Course Instructor

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2017-07-23 14:17:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-23 20:17:00
    [post_content] => Sharing a few recent photos from Senegal taken by student Lucie Kruger.
    [post_title] => Photos from Senegal
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Photos from Senegal

Dragons Admin,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

Sharing a few recent photos from Senegal taken by student Lucie Kruger.

Posted On

07/23/17

Author

Dragons Admin

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

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    [post_date] => 2017-07-22 04:07:55
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-22 10:07:55
    [post_content] => As we walked through Ndem, passing through peanut fields and small huts, I couldn't help but picture myself in Temento Samba, where I was Hotdia M'ballo for five days. As Hotdia I had at least 7 brothers (if not more), 3 sisters, 2 moms and a dad. But, my family didn't stop there: as women greeted me warmly when I passed by their homes or when children gave me their chair so I could sit, I quickly realized that the whole village was my family. This sense of community that made all of us feel so welcome in Temento Samba is also what made our stay unforgettable. As the days went by, the feeling of belonging grew in each of us to the point that I became Hodtia, not only to my host family, but also to the group.

Part of why I enjoyed being Hotdia M'ballo so much was because the whole community made me feel so welcome and my name reminded me of this village and its people. But the M'ballo family also played a huge role in the transformation from Lucie to Hodtia. The first evening I spent as Hodtia in my family, I sat with my little sister Cadiatu M'ballo learning hand games under the starry night accompanied by the consistent sound of her light giggles. That night, as I got under my sheets to sleep, I could already feel myself slipping into Hodtia M'ballo. This feeling only increased as the week went by and I was treated by my siblings and parents more and more as a family member. I really felt like an M'Ballo when Ibrahima, my brother with the biggest smile, whispered "Hodtia ! Hodtia !" through my window at 7 a.m with a cup of water indicating that I had to brush my teeth or when my moms lightly teased my lack of skill sweeping the floor or crushing millet with the mortar and pestle. By the end of the 5 days I was so comfortable in my new home that I felt free to move around, go to the well or even just sit outside in the mornings with a book watching my brothers getting ready to go to the fields and sipping my sugary coffee. I really felt like I was Hodtia M'ballo.
Through Ndem and everywhere else I go, I will always remember being Hodtia M'ballo of Temento Samba and the exceptional experience I had in the small Pulaar village with Cadiatu's hand games and Ibrahima's glowing smile.

Hodtia M'ballo/Lucie Kruger
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SUMMER: Senegal

View post

Becoming Hodtia M’ballo

Lucie Kruger,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

As we walked through Ndem, passing through peanut fields and small huts, I couldn’t help but picture myself in Temento Samba, where I was Hotdia M’ballo for five days. As Hotdia I had at least 7 brothers (if not more), 3 sisters, 2 moms and a dad. But, my family didn’t stop there: as women […]

Posted On

07/22/17

Author

Lucie Kruger

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

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    [post_date] => 2017-07-21 11:46:44
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-07-21 17:46:44
    [post_content] => 
Dear Summer 2017 Senegal Student Families,
It is hard to believe that almost 4 weeks have already passed since embarking on this incredible adventure! It won’t be long before students will be boarding their planes back home. We are sure you are anxiously awaiting their arrival!
Below is a reminder of the return group flight information for eagerly awaiting families (all times are in local time zones):
Friday, July 28th, 2017
 
Delta Airlines Flight # 216
Depart: Dakar @ 12:00 PM
Arrive: New York - JFK @ 4:10 PM
 
We will have a Dragons Administrator on call for the duration of the travel day. Should you need any assistance after regular office hours, please call our “on-call” number at 303-921-6078.
We wish all students a great trip home!
Sincerely,
Boulder Admin
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SUMMER: Senegal

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July 28th Group Return Details & Reminders!

Eva Vanek,SUMMER: Senegal

Description

Dear Summer 2017 Senegal Student Families, It is hard to believe that almost 4 weeks have already passed since embarking on this incredible adventure! It won’t be long before students will be boarding their planes back home. We are sure you are anxiously awaiting their arrival! Below is a reminder of the return group flight […]

Posted On

07/21/17

Author

Eva Vanek

Category

SUMMER: Senegal

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