mali. double the size of texas.
how does one describe the shape of mali?
it has quite an awkward shape. until you stumbled upon the perfect description in a book you’ve now misplaced.
a butterfly with closed wings – un papillion fermé.
mali and butterflies. from this point on, the two will be inseparable for you.
just like you and sunsets.
your eyes savor those few minutes when the sky has that certain shade of pink.
and in this specific spot, the backdrop of what you assume is a termite mound.
but you aren’t sure. as usual, you’re filled with niningali about the things around you. questions.
you decide to watch another sunrise. but you wake up too early and become terrified of the dark and overgrown path.
the imagination runs wild. you know there are no lions or snakes – but still you turn back.
you decide to walk to a field where the grass has been cut to watch the sunrise.
as light slowly fills the sky, your fear fades away.
and you decide to give the overgrown path a second try.
you push your way through the tall grass.
then the ah moment arrives.
you find yourself standing on the banks of the baji niger. the niger river.
a river in textbooks. a river in history. a river in maps.
a river you are in front of.
how many dreams are you living in?
the red balloon makes an appearance.
your eyes are fixed east.
in bambara, koron.
the tile, or sun, performs as usual.
you as well – you think, reflect, and ponder about all the moments that happen seemingly slow and fast at the same time.
time moves here in a way it’s never moved before for you.
you haven’t quite decided how it works.
more sunsets and sunrises are needed before you can figure it out.
which is not going to be a problem at all for the next two years.
time, regardless of whether it moves quickly or slowly, is the one thing you will have plenty of.