I'm not sure if you can consider Bamenda the Big City, but when you live in Belo, it is. So, here are my top 5 city-life treats:
1. Staying in a hotel. Usually I hate them, but this week I had hot water (!!!!) and was able to roll out of bed, have a coffee and log onto wireless internet (it really only worked for one day, but that's better than nothing)...and I didn't even have to leave the building.
Funniest moment: while most people are worried about getting locked out of their hotel room, Linda (VSO Participation and Governance Program Manager) was locked IN her room, and when she called the front desk to have someone come break down the door, the man spent most of his time asking Mandy out in the hall before attempting to break Linda out!
|VSO staff, volunteers and parter organizations at |
Penn Pan Hotel during the Annual Review:
2. PresCafe. One word: cappuccino! I get one every time I'm there (they have real milk!) and this week I had about 10. More highlights of PresCafe: (the best) Swiss Muesli (ever), Pasta and Greek Salads, plus the comforts of a clean European-style café in the heart of Bamenda. We had our final meeting there and spent the day ordering coffee after coffee and eating like pigs (thank you Ryan for the best home-made asian spring rolls and peanut sauce ever!)
|Final volunteer meeting at PresCafe|
3. Valentine’s Day at HandiCraft. A beautiful craftshop in Bamenda with adjoining restaurant and a fantastic view of the city and a local craft shop. I had my favourite Cameroonian dinner: chicken, ndole and plantains, and spent a lovely night with three other volunteers (one of whom experienced her first Valentine`s day as a married woman without her new husband. Ashia!)
|Valentine's at Handcraft:|
4. Creamy Crevette Curry at International Hotel! A bit expensive (for Cameroon), but SO worth it! This was my first meal in Bamenda with Amelita right off the bus, and is still one of my favourites. They have cold beer and a big screen TV on the patio...where I happened to hear my first bit of news from the real world - Whitney is dead! RIP Witney.
5. Sister Rose. I realize all my highlights revolve around food. This blog obviously has a theme (maybe I should change the name). At Sister Rose, you choose your chicken before they kill it. Then they serve everything on a platter and you all eat with your hands in true Cameroonian style (we had a big group and ordered fish and chicken, jama jama and plantains - I`m still not tired of it!).
|Marja choosing her dinner|
Not only did I enjoy a truly luxurious holiday in the city (yes, I am now very easy to please!), but I was back again the following week for the NGO Fair!