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The Wassu Stone Circles

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I make my way East along the North Shore of the Gambia River, driving into the heart of the country. Immediately I notice people living more simply in straw huts, and a lot more people visibly farming and living very close to the land. There are many military stops along the highway, and all are extremely friend and happy to meet me. More than a few ask for my email so we can keep in touch.

The main North Highway in Gambia, taking me East into the middle of the country

The main North Highway in Gambia, taking me East into the middle of the country

Immediately I noticed people live much simpler here - in these mud and straw huts

Immediately I noticed people live much simpler here – in these mud and straw huts

I stop to take a photo of a huge anthill, and a local lady approaches me. We smile and exchange a wave, though I get the feeling she does not speak English. After a minute or so she picks up fruit that has fallen from the tree above, and shows me how to peel and eat it. I pickup my own and bite into it – kind of a grainy textured apricot if I had to place it – absolutely delicious. The lady, standing quite close to me, holds out her hand and says, in very clear English “Give Me Money”.
I have had children begging, and even the odd injured person hold out their hand, though this demanding in my face is new. I feel really uncomfortable, and quickly move on.

The Wassu Stone Circles are a UNESCO world heritage site, and somewhat resemble Stonehenge. The reason for their existence, and their age, is not certain, though it’s widely accepted they are some kind of burial or sacrificial monument. Many such sites are scattered around this region of Senegambia.

The entire site at the Wassu Stone Circles

The entire site at the Wassu Stone Circles

A closeup on one Wassu Stone Circle

A closeup on one Wassu Stone Circle

The “Stone Man” quickly appears to show me around the site, who turns out to be quite the character. Stone man has all kinds of ideas about how the number 9 (or what it 13?) is central to everything, as are symbols that can be found on everything from money to company logos. He’s crazy, and I like him. I know we’ll see each other again in the coming days.

Stoneman - the immensely quirky self-appointed local legend

The weather has taken it's toll

The weather has taken it’s toll

It’s an extremely beautiful place, with a little museum with well written descriptions and explanations. There is even an offer to camp at the site – which would be great – though I move on, aiming for something with a little more river influence.

Some of the stones are slowly crumbling

The whole area is beautiful

The whole area is beautiful

-Dan

1 Response

  1. October 9, 2016

    […] Read the rest of the story on The Road Chose Me […]

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