Friday, November 1, 2013

Akateza Festival

A few weeks ago we were lucky enough to attend another local festival. This festival, Fete d'Akateza, began 10 years prior as an excuse for all the villages in the area to come together and celebrate their successes and rejoice in their brotherhood. During the festival there were speeches and performances, but what stood out in comparison to most other festivals we had attended was the recognition of the top students (both male and female) in all the villages.

It was nice to see a new tradition in the works-- one that encouraged brotherhood, community and education!

Here are a few pictures from the event:

A group of hunters from a local village chant over a water filled vase that has been filled by a priest.
The vase and water represent the solidarity between their communities.
"Nous sommes ensemble"

Another hunter, surveying the crowd.

A group of women, adorned in paints and flowers, dance for the crowd.

An enthusiastic onlooker.

Babies dancing. It never stops being cute.

This kid took over the entire village performance.

So many beads.
Waiting to dance.


  1. The colors are AMAZING! Are you framing a lot of these pictures? They are incredible! What a great festival to witness.

    1. Thanks! I'm saving them all so we can print out the "best of" and frame them when we get back to the US. We really are lucky to get the opportunity to attend these festivals-- they are so cool!

  2. My husband has just been posted to Lome starting in August and I have been voraciously reading your blog, trying to figure out how life is like there. We live in India now but have lived in the Philippines and Rwanda before. Availability of goods in India is much better than in Rwanda and I'm wondering if there are "western" grocery stores there? How much is Internet on average for a household? I'm also wondering about the local international development job market and how hard it would be for someone (ie. myself) to find a job there. I have experience in rural development in 6 countries now... Any insight on this would be super helpful. Thanks again! Keep the posts going.

    1. Hi Rai! You'll love Lome--we have a really good time, but sometimes you have to put in what you want to get out of it. As long as you're up for an adventure, it's really fun! Although I've been to Rwanda I haven't lived there, so I can't say much about the availability of goods. I would guess you can find more stuff in Rwanda than you can here. We have a few supermarkets, but they carry mostly French things, and the stock changes weekly, so if you need American brands or specific things, pack them! On the upside, we have great cheese, wine and breads! Our internet is about $80/month and it's pretty good. The job market outside the embassy can be rough. You have to be fluent in French and be REALLY motivated. I just found a job with an NGO after a year of trying. We should still be here when you get here, so I'm happy to introduce you to some of the NGO people I know so you don't have to start from scratch like I did. I'm also the CLO for a few more months, so if you'd like any lists, post info, etc. just let me know, I'm happy to send it to you!

  3. Hi Kate,

    Thanks so much for getting back to me. I'm super excited. We will be moving in August and look forward to meeting with you. :-) Would really appreciate any lists or posts you may have. A random question- we have a dog and we are wondering how feasible it is to bring her to Togo. I think I remember reading that you have a dog there as well? We're wondering if there is any infrastructure in place or kennels for long term vacations or if you think there will be people there willing to put her up for a while when we are on summer holidays for example? I'm pretty devastated about having to leave her behind so am hoping that we won't have to take that decision!

    1. Rai, email me at and I'll send you everything I have on how to get your dog to Togo (and other fun info)!