TOWARDS THE MOUNTAINS ALANTIKAS-Travel Journeys of Cameroon-Sanlui – Pic.
We start heading to Poly after breakfast in a cafe typically African in which only serve beef stew, bread and coffee. It is Sunday and is jam packed. We stopped to buy some fruit and provisions for the trek by Alantikas market Maroua, water, some canned tuna and bread. On the way we passed the village of Dang to visit the market, but we had problems with a couple of guys who said they were police, and tried to make some extra money by making us pay a license course photography. Abdul was very angry and almost come to blows, so we opted to leave before the astonished gaze of the merchants. Starting Gouna people said goodbye to the asphalt and take the track towards Poli coming out right. They begin to be populated with rounded huts built of adobe and thatched roof, is the territory of ethnic Dupa. The roofs of the differ Dupa be rounded and curved, unlike the Mafa who build peak terminated tilted slightly to the right. Poblado Mafa , on Flickr Poblado Mafa , on Flickr This is the way they have to communicate His own who lives there someone of the same ethnic group and are welcome. The scenery is spectacular, a green that I’ve only seen on this earth is everywhere. Suddenly the villages disappear to make way for the Lighthouse reserve inexplicably can cross without more, with the sole process of teaching the passports to the police station gendarmes Voko. Faro River, a tributary of Benoué gives this park where you can still see some antelope, buffalo or lion although the fauna has been decimated by poachers Nigerians. It starts to rain and water forces us to try to discover the animals through the mist of the crystal, the place is absolutely wild. The landscape changes, before us stands the mountain chain that links the mountains Ginga, Poli, Mango and Alantika. We enter Dowayo territory, people who still practice their ancient animist rites, despite the recent influences of Christianity. Huts sets do not form a compact village occur along the track. Many have needles stuck in the ceiling, the method used to keep away evil spirits that attack children. Another way used to protect against the demons is to abandon the house if something bad happens in it, which is why we see many crumbling shacks. Among animist peoples five people have particular influence on the tribe, the village chief, the religious head, the head blacksmith, the witch and the midwife. A menacing clouds remain anchored at the top of the mountain, I can not help recalling a passage from Nigel Barley famous book “The Innocent Anthropologist” in which he speaks of the witch of rain, surely this should be your home. Panoramic Earth Dowayo . , in flick We Poli, Faro department capital, which is nothing more than a collection of houses arranged around an open space like a square, in which several women have arranged their positions Peul milk and yogurt, to the shade of a large tree. We stayed at the only hostel available in the village, who against all odds has air conditioning, the only luxury in the room counts. Also a kind of shower-toilet with buckets of water for bathing. After eating part of tuna stocks available to us, since it is Sunday and the two restaurants in town are closed, we will visit some of the camps are nomadic Mbororo along track linking Fignolé Poli. Twenty minutes after hellish track from Poli, left the car and we go walking in the Brousse, as they say here, to denote grassy expanses and impenetrable vegetation. About an hour later we arrived at the first camp, consisting of several igloo-shaped huts in a clearing in the middle of a cornfield grown by Dowayo. Girls , on Flickr A Mbororo or Peul nomads, not like working the land, they just pay tribute to the owners of the land where they graze their animals and sell their dairy products on the market. They remain in this place during the rainy season, leaving it after in search of pasture for their livestock. The setting is idyllic, a valley surrounded by green mountains spectacular. Seen from Mbororo nomadic settlements , on Flickr The nomadic Mbororo still continue to practice scarification on the face, arms and torso as a symbol of beauty and belonging to a particular clan. Make small cuts in the skin with a knife and pigments applied to the wound to create different designs depending on the clan to which they belong. These designs match those made in pirografiadas pumpkins using as a container for all. Like their relatives Manengouba sedentary noted for their beauty and care they put into their appearance. There are often mixed with other breeds to keep their purity of blood and its distinctive physical characteristics. Young mother in Flickr Women , on Flickr Mbororo girl in Flickr girl Mbororo , on Flickr Just saw men in the various camps we visited, these are responsible for the care of the flock, out early with his bow and returning at dusk. The women stay at home taking care of the children, doing the cooking and weaving. Also is responsible for milking cows, making cheese and yogurt and sell at various weekly markets. Work , on Flickr Sifting corn , on Flickr Cooking , on Flickr Lunchtime … , on Flickr cleaning striking surrounding the various shacks, the dirt floor is swept pristine daily giving a camp. Once past the first moment of shyness come to be portrayed by our cameras, so we took to the lack of light that reminds us that we still have to walk back to the car. Poblado Mbororo , on Flickr Mbororo Women , on Flickr Young , on Flickr We said goodbye and we Poli just in time for a shower before dinner. We take a tortilla, only dish on the menu, on a makeshift table on the street, in the light of a candle, surrounded by neighbors of Poli, who often see many tourists here, quite an experience. The village is very lively at night, groups of people gathered in the street around a bulb powered generator watching us curiously. We took several turns in search of somewhere to have a drink, but finally gave up and returned to the hostel. Lots of frogs, of considerable size, perfectly camouflaged among the rocks that surround it, jump to our feet. After the shock of the first, carefully move into our room. We put the mosquito net, although there seems to be very necessary, and we get into our bags, since the state of the sheets does not offer much confidence.