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Heading North to Dassa

Dass main strett

Center of Dassa

It took quite a while for the bus to Dassa to fill since it was Saturday, besides nine people certainly are not enough for nine seats. Only when about 16 passengers filled the vehicle, lots of cargo was stowed away on the roof, including a moped, did we leave Cotonou. Since I got the privileged seat next to the driver, it was a sweet trip.

Leaves covered with soil

Soon after leaving Cotonou the layer of soil on the trees and houses became even thicker, only the color changed to a rusty red. The Harmattan season had turned the air and sky in the south into bland gray, now it was even more obvious. Not the best time for taking photos.

sacks of Gari

bags filled with gari, flour made of Cassava roots

For the first hour palm-, banana-,papaya- and mango trees lined the road, later that changed to cashew- and teak trees mated by red dust. The scenery is nothing to write home about, bone dry during this time of the year. The villages we passed were like any others in Africa, houses made of clay, covered with plaster, its color fading. Wooden stalls made of four lean tree truck and terribly rusty metal sheet on top, sleepy vendors watching the traffic go by. When a bus or taxi brusse stops, the big rush sets in. Street vendors push their drinks and food. At one stop women rushed up to the windows shouting pain chaud (fresh bread), but locals warned me not to buy it because the vendors scrap of the dust before the bus arrives. As if I would care about such trivial issues when I am hungry. There was even another European on the bus, a priest who is assigned to Parakou and he spoke German, what a treat. Between Bohican and Dassa we did not pass many villages, but road of was lined with hugs bags charcoal, neatly leaning against each other. Even more picturesque are the many wooden platforms stacked with bags of gari, flour made of cassava. The last layer is put upright, so the bags look like little white towers.

Accommodation: Hotel des Soeurs, 6000 CFA per night, very quiet, very clean, close to simple restaurants

Transport: Taxi Brusse: Dassa – Bohican: 1500 CFA, Minibus: Dassa – Cotonou: 4000 CFA


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