It's dry hot during the day, but it cools down a little bit after sunset in Dakar.
The sky appears to be hazy or almost sandy every day as some sand is blown in by the dusts from the Sahara desert.
The hottest season around this region of west Africa is said to be between April and November when the temperature often reaches over 40 degrees. Fortunately, I don't have to worry about the heat as for now.
Honestly speaking, my first impression on Dakar was;
" Ahhh.... Is This It ? ? ? "
I wasn't expecting much, but the name "Dakar" had done a huge influence on my imagination about the city due to one of the world's most famous rallies - Paris & Dakar Rally.
In reality, however, Dakar was still very impoverished, much more than my imagination. There appeared to be lack of infrastructure, many buildings and roads under construction or undone, and lots of kids begging on the streets. I'm not judgemental about Senegal. This is just factual.
Nevertheless, the bright side of Senegal is that although poverty is clearly evident, there are hardly any dodgy people here such as thieves, muggers and alcohol/drug addicts. Senegalese people seem to me very disciplined.
Additionally, most of them are super slim and super tall like my friends' Senegalese husband - Michele. I see quite a few semi Naomi Campbell and semi Usain Bolt everywhere!
My new friend Seydina who I got to know while we were stuck in Washington D.C. for two days was very helpful, giving me a lift from the airport to the hostel the other day, e-mailing me at times to make sure my stay in Dakar was Okay, etc, etc.
One night he even invited me to his parents' house for dinner, and the photo below shows what I had with Seydina and his brothers all together around this bowl of rice.
This dish was called "Thebou Diene" - perhaps, the most common and traditional (?) Senegalese food with rice, fish and steamed veggies.
You might think that it doesn't look good (I also thought so in the beginning), but it was actually really good. It tasted a little similar to the Japanese dish called "Takikomi Gohan".
Seydina's younger brother made tea for me by pouring it into a shot glass and then into another shot glass, repeating this process for a few times in order to make the tea fluffy(?).
It tasted to me like weak coffee with lots of sugar in it, but he claimed that it was tea.
Seydina spoke very good English, but his other family members spoke Wolof and French (the official language), both of which I did not speak (just a little bit of French).
I really wish that I could have some decent conversations with Seydina's parents and his other brothers. Still, I felt very fortunate to be invited to a local Senegalese family and to have dinner with them.