Today Mariah and I managed, in under seven hours, to help my village’s women’s group not only register as an official groupement but also open a bank account and make their first deposit.
Since this involved visits to three large bureaucracies, we were fully prepared to be bounced between ten different people, none of whom would be at their desks, and to finish the day having made zero progress. But for whatever reason (lunar alignment? toubab charisma?), we sailed through each and every stop along the way (except for the photo store, but even there we emerged victorious), and the women are heading back to the village tonight with an assortment of signed and stamped forms and a little booklet saying they’ve got 34,500 CFA in their account.
It’s nice to be heading out for vacation on one of these rare notes of success, feeling that I’ve earned myself a bit of cold weather and some fish ‘n chips.