This morning we explored the old neighborhood of Bobo Dioulasso for a feeling of what life was like in old Burkina Faso when it was colonized and referred to as the Upper Volta.
Its present name, Burkina Faso, was given by Thomas Sankara and translates as “The land of the upright men.”
We first drove a few minutes over to the Grand Mosque, built in traditional Sudanic architecture from the late 1900s, when this area was part of the Kingdom of Sia.
It’s one of the only mosques where they were totally fine with women not having to cover themselves as well as letting us hang out on the roof.
We then crossed the street from the mosque to visit an animist pilgrimage site in Burkina Faso where people come to sacrifice animals to the local sacred catfish.
While we were informed it’s taboo for men to wear red clothes and take photos on this site, this was not enforced at all.
And it’s definitely far from taboo to hang with the locals.
We then returned on the road for a few hours back to Ouagadougou with a last evening stop in Bazoule – a sacred crocodile pond.
The locals here respect and co-exist with these crocodiles; they are never hunted, harmed or killed. In turn for this “kindness,” these crocs also don’t eat the local Burkinabe (not sure about foreign tourists though).
Some are believed to be over a hundred years old and the oldest has been called the ‘old man of the lake’.
They wouldn’t tell us which one that was, however. But they did say it was okay to touch or sit on them just as what we had done 2 months ago in The Gambia.
By 8pm we arrived back at Hotel Lwili in Ouagadougou for dinner.
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- At time of posting in Bazoule, it was 27 °C - Humidity: 19% | Wind Speed: 9km/hr | Cloud Cover: sunny