Blog#5 Mealtime

Nyles Davidheiser - Senegal


March 15, 2017

This written blog will give an overview of the most important meal of the day here in Senegal- Lunch (Añe) served between hours 2:00pm-3:00pm where you are served the signature dish Fish & Rice (Thiebu Dieune)

The conversation is in French & Wolof intermixed but following is the English translation.

Note: Bassirou-Bass is Nyles-Me

Family: Bass…Kaay lekk fi
Bassirou: Waaw, Mangi ñeuw
Family: Kaay Añe
Bassirou: Waaw

Note: We eat communally- all together around one bowl. We eat once everyone is there.

Family: Nexna?
Bassirou: Waaw, Se bon, nexna!
Family: Lekkal-Lekkal…. mange, mange beaucop!
Bassirou: Suurnaa
Family: Non, Bass mange, lekkal
Bassirou: Suurnaa, Suurnaa
Family: Bass lekkal, Mange tooti-tooti?
Bassirou: Suurnaa, nexna barina
Family: Merci Merci, jërëjëf! Se bon…Nexna?
Bassirou: Waaw, se bon nexna , Merci beaucop.
Family: Bo demey Etats Unis de Amerique tooti-tooti denga, Dañu beugue nga am dolé. Bo lekke tooti, se pas bon, Sa famille, duñu la xamé. Mange beaucop, baaxna, Sa famille content.

Family: Nyles… come eat here
Bassirou: Yes, I’m coming.
Family: Come eat lunch
Bassirou: Yes

Note: We eat communally- all together around one bowl. We eat once everyone is there.

Family: Is it good/delicious?
Bassirou: Yes, it’s good, very delicious.
Family: Eat more-Eat more, eat… eat plenty/very much
Bassirou: I am very full
Family: No..Nyles eat! Eat more
Bassirou: I am very full, I’m stuffed
Family: Nyles eat more, why do you eat so little?
Bassirou: I am very full, it’s very good and plenty.
Family: Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! Is it good, was it delicious?
Bassirou: Yes, it was good, very tasty, Thank you very much.
Family: If/when you go back to the States you will be very small. We want you to be strong. If you eat so little, it’s not good, your family, they won’t recognize you. If you eat a lot, it’s good, your family will be happy.

-At mealtimes, we are placed around the bowl and each person has their designated eating area. The fish and vegetables are placed in the center where everyone has access to taking their share. Usually the women, either the Mother or sister will break it up with their hands and place it in your area. For meals we are supposed to use our right hand, and never use our left, lunch time we usually have utensils but dinner time is much different.

Senegal- Land of Terranga
Land of Terranaga- hospitality

Even you as the reader would face this hospitable culture. As you have read, the families want you to eat plenty and will do the most to ensure you do. They don’t want you hungry, but rather very very very stuffed.

One month remaining- my next blog will include photos which will be taken in my Village/Community. Subscribe below & receive the update.

Nyles Davidheiser