This morning we were at Odienne in the Ivory Coast, after checking out we left, today we will travel South; in this part of the country fewer cars and trucks pass than in the Eastern part and the population seems poorer, there are certainly more traditional villages, even if the towns and cities are not lacking.
As we move towards the South, vegetation is increasingly present and becomes ever more luxuriant; it is wonderful to see so much green after so much dryness.
After a couple of hours drive we arrived at the town of Touba, here we are in the land of the Yacuba, also known as Dan.
We went to visit the village of Silakorothat houses a puddle with catfishes, sacred animals for the Yacuba and also for other tribes of West Africa; to get to the pool we have to cross the village and the children and the women follow us and ask us for photographs, they seem very much amused by our presence.
Then we went to the village of Godoufouma, that is not far away, even here we pass through the huts and go there where there is a large open space; here we witness the dance of stilts, that they usually dance on special occasions such as births or funerals.
It was very interesting to meet the Dan, they are very hospitable and seem happy with our presence.
When the dance ends it's lunch time, so we went to the little town of Touba that we passed through before; our guide has already ordered the buffet, so when we arrive, everything is ready.
We had lunch outside under a fresh roof, we relax, chat and laugh; we're just fine here.
After lunch it's time to leave again, we have to travel about a hundred kilometers to reach Man.
The landscape changes again, the vegetation is more and more lush and, around us, there are some hills covered with equatorial forest with palm trees, papayas and Iroko trees, that are very high, at some point we also see some rocky promontory; all this green is very relaxing.
Around 4:00pm we arrive in Man, it seems to be a fairly large town.
First we go to see the sacred monkeys that are in the forest just outside Man; they are mona monkeys, they are small but they look very smart.
As soon as they see us, they come to meet us because they are used to letting people feed them.
A legend tells that a sorcerer turned men into monkeys so that they could hide in the woods; the sorcerer wanted to save the men from an invader and told them "when I defeat the invader I come back and turn you back into men", but the sorcerer died and the men remained apes.
These monkeys are revered, therefore, since the inhabitants of Man believe they are their ancestors.
This story is similar to one of the legends told in Ghana in the Boabeng Fiema Sacred Forest.
We give them some bananas, they are fast and ravenous; take some photos and then we go.
We walk a bit through the streets of the city, we pass through a couple of markets and then finally arrive at the hotel.
Before resting a bit we go shopping, here in fact there are 3 or 4 stalls selling masks, statues and other crafts.
We will stay here at Man 2 nights; tomorrow we will visit the surroundings, but now we deserve a little rest.