Jelle’s birthday party

Shortly after his arrival in Ségou, Jelle started talking about his upcoming birthday, making sure we would know the date. Hearing that for most Malian’s a birthday is of no importance at all, meaning they do not celebrate it, was quite disappointing for Jelle. He was looking forward to a nice party with a real birthday cake, beers, lots of people around and a nice meal…

Sure enough a few days after one of the talks about his maybe not so realistic birthday celebration wishes in Mali, my favorite chef in Ségou proudly showed me some pictures of his latest project: birthday cakes…

Jelle’s birthday arrived. I had ordered a birthday cake, Jelle had invited a few people, and would arrange some drinks for his small scale party.
A knock on the gate door announced the first guests, I thought. Opening the door I was highly surprised to find Daouda’s entire band and some dancers waiting outside.

The initial small scale party turned into a birthday party Malian style with loud live music, an almost melted, but delicious birthday cake and a small crowd, each of them arriving with either drinks or food.

It was different than he’s used to, but I guess Jelle will remember turning 22 in Mali!

About MoInMali

Monique is the founder of Papillon Reizen, a Mali based travel agency specialized in inspiring journeys in Mali, Burkina Faso, Togo and Benin. Fair-trade and with a heart for people, environment and culture. Small-scale group journeys as well as family trips and journeys tailored to your wishes. We love to share West Africa's beauty with you and take you on a journey to experience rather than to see. Monique lives in Mali with her Malian partner and shares some of her daily life experiences with you through this blog. For information on Papillon Reizen:
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