Peace Care Blog

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“Off to Kedougou!”

Date:  10/20/2013
Author:  Paul Rotert, MD; resident physician at UIC
Photo:  Michael and Paul waiting while Andrew secures a taxi
 
Today the UIC team left Dakar for Kedougou (pronounced Ked-a-goo). We were fortunate that Peace Corps provided us with a SUV and the 11-hour trip was uneventful and safe. The roads are a mix of really well paved highway and large potholes randomly intermixed, which made for a very swerving and bumpy ride. Michael (UIC med student) and Chip (Peace Corps volunteer) were troopers and rode on fold-down seats in the very back the whole trip. 

Kedougou is located in southeastern Senegal and is a much smaller town than the capital Dakar. It still has many aspects of a larger town like a busy street filled with motorcycles and cars, a small marketplace and a decent sized hospital. It was here that we were first able to meet the other Peace Corps volunteers (shout out to Anne, Patrick, Katie and Chris) with whom we will be working the remainder of the trip.  They are all really amazing and interesting people and the team looks forward to getting to know them better. 
 
A Peace Corps volunteer was actually having a going away party that night and we went to someone’s house where there was music, great food and even dancing. The food was served community style on large plates and everyone knelt around and ate with the hands. In fact, we were informed we should only eat with the right hand – the left hand is considered dirty because it is used for… other things. We were able to unwind a little that night at a local bar/ restaurant then headed back to our hotel to prepare for the trip to Saraya (pronounced Sorry-a) the next day.

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