February 03, 2005

All Things French

Seems like our French President, Jacques Chirac, is doing an extensive tour of Africa. He was in Madagascar a few weeks ago and now is touring Senegal.

When I came out of the office, people were running in the streets, kids were shrieking, little girls were carrying posters of the French president (he does not look any better on a big poster than on television) and sprinting to keep up with the long cortege of cars.

In my 6 months here, I have never seen a french flag. Now I saw dozens. It's funny because, while people talk of the injustices that they have suffered at the hands of the french (and let's not forget that I get called "Colon!" and "Racist!" when I don't buy what's being offered to me on every street), there is still this lingering nostalgia of all things french. I have often heard the old men start their conversations with "In the good old days of colonization..." with genuine fondness.

Strange.

2 comments:

Patrick Kergin said...

I think it's called Stockholm syndrome. Once you have been kidnapped my someone for a period of time, you start identifying with the captor.

007 in Africa said...

I take it you are an expert, being Canadian :) When's your next update? Seems like forever you haven't updated your blog...