Footprints to Zanzibar

End of 1973 trip from Congo to Cameroun

So, there we were in the Douala  airport restaurant, stretched out on the floor, dozing off.  I sat up, bleary-eyed, when a foreign-looking man, speaking English, approached us!  M., the 17-year-old of our threesome was with him – I think he’d been walking around the airport.  It was about ten thirty p.m.

The english-speaking man ushered us outside to a waiting vehicle; his wife, a smiling white face in the darkness, was there with him.  The vehicle had a.c. and was large and newish – it smelled good!  This couple were the Williams, an A.G. outreach family our parents had made a contact with on our behalf!

At their house, a night watchman let us in the gates and this friendly couple followed us in to the house – (more air conditioning!) – we felt revived more every second.  Mrs. Williams offered us food but we were too tired to eat. They gave medication to J. Mrs. Williams made me follow her upstairs and led me into a comfortable bedroom, showing me, down the narrow passageway, a gleaming pastel bathroom on the right. Straight ahead in the end wall of the hall, to the left of the shining bathroom she reached out and opened a louvre door, revealing a linen closet and telling me to help myself to towels.  I’d never seen anything like those towels – fluffy, bright, soft, new – American!  Stacked in pastel towers and smelling of fabric softener and sunshine.

The next day they gave us bacon and eggs for breakfast and took us back to the airport, where we flew to Yaounde and hugged our families; J. was home at that point and continued on malaria meds, recovering fully, later. M. and I together with our families had another three-hour car journey, from Yaounde to Ebolowa, but that felt like nothing after what we’d already been through and because we were with our siblings and parents!  Arriving home the following day we began long summer vacation in earnest!IMG_1314


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