Tiny doses of Progress

One of the problems in Bissau is the lack of civic mindedness in the city's residents. It's not uncommon to see an educated person toss an empty can onto the sidewalk, and the city's ditches are packed to the brim with trash. In fairness, there aren't any trash bins anywhere, so you have to wait to get to the mini landfills to throw trash away. I think the consequences of this lack of civic mindedness -- i.e., narrowly avoiding being roadkill because drivers refuse to yield, and trash strewn about everywhere -- get me down sometimes. Then, I see small but significant signs of progress, and I can't help but feel happy. A couple weeks ago, it was seeing garbage trucks picking up trash. This morning, it was a class of kids picking up shards of glass and trash outside my apartment building. I was so happy to see them, but I was running late and didn't get the chance to stop and talk to them.

Moments like this make me feel like Guinea Bissau is moving (albeit slowly) in the right direction.

Joanna BusbyComment