Group XXII Photos

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Tad McArdle's Photos

Sannu da zuwa!

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A Gwari Woman and Boy
A Gwari Woman and Boy


Yauwa!!! So I'll proceed. I'm Tad McArdle, was stationed in Zaria, taught at Advanced Teachers College, extended a year (1969), then came to NYC and got involved with a local newspaper, learned the craft of typesetting, fell in with a crowd of dancers and musicians and studied Latin and Ghanaian drumming for several years. Left NYC when I was lucky enough to join up with Mary Clifford from NJ; we were married in August 1981, had a son Michael in 1984, and I have had quite a fortunate New Jersey suburban life with a wife and son beyond my dreams.

I have kept my Nigeria slides in good condition; the slide above and the next one were taken, I seem to recall, in a Gwari village I visited with Ibrahim Dapchi, one of my ATC students who later came to Pittsburgh as a student and visited me in my home town of Foxburg, PA, becoming almost certainly the first Nigerian to stroll our local historic golf course.

Gwari Woman in Doorway
Gwari Woman in Doorway

Some of you may recall approaching, from a distance, an inverted pyramid with a tiny squiggle at the bottom, which as you drove closer revealed itself to be a Gwari woman bearing enough firewood, towering above the basket on her shoulder, to thaw a small Alaskan city. I also recall hitching a ride to Kaduna with a couple of young, well-dressed Nigerian pastors, one of whom commented as we passed such a sight, "Gwari - ba dama." (No chance for the Gwari)"



Allen Washington Tries Hula
Allen Washington Tries Hula

Assume you all recall our early days in Lagos. I remember Allen's honest comment as the little tropical creatures outside our dorm windows roared out their lullaby the first night: "I'd just like to tell 'em all to shut the hell up!" Not much sleep if I remember correctly. Much more to come. And by the way, hope to see you next month in Boston. Tad

Back again. I’ll show the shots with PCVs first. Here’s Allen again, with Steve Hantman, Eleanor Epner, and two others whose names escape me but whose personalities I well recall. Guess which one introduced me to the formidable Texas “Bye!!!”

Eleanor Epner, Steve Hantman, Allen Washington
Eleanor Epner, Steve Hantman, Allen Washington

Here’s Eleanor again, with Art Harvey, in Kano.

Eleanor Epner and Art Harvey in Kano
Eleanor Epner and Art Harvey in Kano

Here we have Mike Levine hitching north to escape the heat (I didn’t have the heart to tell him).

Mike Levine
Mike Levine


Mike Levine and Barry Morf
Mike Levine and Barry Morf

Now Mike and Barry Morf in the Zaria courtyard she shared with a lady who sold bean cakes.

Around the Advanced Teachers College

Laverne Majors and Laborers
Laverne Majors and Laborers
Tad McArdle and the Bike Repairmen
Tad McArdle and the Bike Repairmen

Yours truly with the fun and wacky class of bike repairmen whom we were teaching English, just outside the grounds of Advanced Teachers College; I recall the day when we showed up and they greeted us with our admittedly pretty basic English phrases all done in rapid-fire Hausa, a fairly delicious parody when you consider the number of languages Nigerians ordinarily picked up by osmosis.


Laverne Majors and Students
Laverne Majors and Students

Laverne and I also taught the children of Tukur-Tukur village, and here we are in their wonderful midst.

Tad McArdle at Tukur-Tukur
Tad McArdle at Tukur-Tukur

House and Household

This next photo is of the daughter (standing) of my first cook, Yusufu, with a girl of Tukur-Tukur village behind her. Their ethnicities were not the same, but Yusufu’s daughter seemed to be welcomed into the class we taught.

Tukur-tukur girls
Tukur-tukur girls

Here’s one of the gates to the Old City, with some incredibly realistic goat sculptures on top.

Zaria Gate with Goats
Zaria Gate with Goats
Yakubu
Yakubu

Here's Yakubu, who cooked for me in the house I show next.

Road to Tad's Second House, in Zaria
Road to Tad's Second House, in Zaria

First, the road to my second house, in the Old City.

My House in the Old City of Zaria
My House in the Old City of Zaria

Then the actual house, in the background, with some local kids in the foreground.

Argungu

Here are two photos of the Argungu fishing festival:

Argungu Fishing Festival
Argungu Fishing Festival

The fish were called "giwan ruwa" - elephant of the waters.


A Village, Probably Near Argungu
A Village, Probably Near Argungu


Judging by the bluish cast which formerly marked all my Argungu photos, this was a village scene near there.

Sallah

These next are photos taken at Sallah. Remember the crescent moon and “Gobe Sallah! Gobe Sallah!"? Wish I had known as much about what was happening as the boy up in the tree.

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Ending with scenes from the vicinity of my first house, in the “suburbs” –

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the old man with his attendants, whose visit had a purpose I can’t recall;

At Tukur-Tukur Village

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then another woman in another doorway at sunset in Tukur-Tukur village;

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then a Tukur-Tukur girl, as I recall named Ladi, on the road from our house to town,


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then her friend, perhaps named Sa’a, also kind enough to hold still for a portrait. Sa’a means luck, as I recall, and I only hope she's had lots of it over the years

John Losse's Group 22 Photos

This is a collection of photos of Group XXII volunteers and their friends and co-workers, mostly in their "off-hours".

A Trip to the Zoo

Those who remember the irrepressible Mike Levine may wonder what made him so pensive at this moment:

Mike Levine in a rare pensive moment
Mike Levine in a rare pensive moment

Well, he is staring down into a snake pit created and maintained by Ivan Dihoff, an American teaching at the Katsina Teachers College with a USAID project. Ivan paid kids to bring in various live specimens, hoping to learn the tricks of the snake charmers. You can see, next to Mike, the ladder Ivan used to get into the pit. He kept anti-venin in his house, and needed it more than once.


Ivan's wife, Gretchen Dihoff, wrote Katsina: Profile of a Nigerian City

Here is a photo of Mike Levine and Tad McArdle at one of Ivan's other exhibits.

Here is a photo of Mike Levine and Tad McCardle at one of Ivan's other exhibits.
Here is a photo of Mike Levine and Tad McCardle at one of Ivan's other exhibits.

Teachers

Teachers had a pretty full schedule. In the North, classes met Monday through Saturday, though Friday was a short day (three classes in the early morning) as it was mosque day. In Katsina, PCV's typically went to "the club" on Fridays for a noontime feast of sorts, beer & cold peppered chicken, and then home for a nap. This kind of shot Friday. Sunday was for planning out the week. This is Debby Losse either doing a handout or a test.

Debby Losse at work making a test
Debby Losse at work making a test

She is working with a mimeograph master for the Gestetner machine donated to GSS Katsina by a Canadian, Conrad Siggurdson. You made corrections with a solvent (the red bottle) and when you ran off the copies you would get this pink goo all over if you screwed up. The alternative was to write the whole test on the board. The radio was for daily BBC broadcasts and a link to the outside world. Many PCV's went the whole two years without phoning home.

Is she a PCV or a polo player? This is Edna Joyce on a visit to the big city (Katsina) from her post at the Craft School in Mashi.

Edna Joyce on a visit to the big city
Edna Joyce on a visit to the big city

Eleanor Epner was stationed in Kano and made it up to Katsina several times. It was about 110 miles and five hours or so by lorry. When you got there you just wanted to have a good sit.


Willy

Eleanor and Willy
Eleanor and Willy

The dachsund was Willy. He maintained his sleek form by chasing lizards back up into the tinroof eaves. He had a great vertical leap, in dog inches.

Willy the Lizard Slayer
Willy the Lizard Slayer

Rock climbing

One weekend some PCVs from a survey group invited a bunch of Katsina-area folks to go rock climbing near Kazaure.

Edna, Barbara, Debby and Pete Anderson rock climbing near Kazaure
Edna, Barbara, Debby and Pete Anderson rock climbing near Kazaure

Pictured above are Edna Joyce, Barbara Dwyer (Nigeria 15), Debby Losse and Pete Anderson.

Below are Barb Dwyer (Nigeria 15) and Jeremy in Kazaure. Jeremy was a GVSO (British volunteer). Barb's book probably came from the Peace Corps book locker.

Barb Dwyer and Jeremy
Barb Dwyer and Jeremy

Edna Joyce and Mike Hicks, also from the survey group:

Edna Joyce and Mike Hicks
Edna Joyce and Mike Hicks

France was right next door

For volunteers in Katsina, it was possible to take a day trip to "Furanci" (i.e. France). About 50 miles to the north and across the border lay Maradi, Niger Republic. Although small, it had an airport where wines, even strawberries, might arrive weekly from Marseilles. There was a small restaurant operated by a French couple. One day we borrowed John McNeil's jeep and drove there just to eat a restaurant meal.

John and Debby Losse do lunch in "France"
John and Debby Losse do lunch in "France"

Getting a visa would have taken weeks, a trip to the Niger Consulate in Kano (a hundred miles in the wrong direction) and probably a bribe. Instead, we just left our passports off with the border guards and picked them up on the way back.

The border station, Republique du Niger
The border station, Republique du Niger


Here is the destination.

The French restaurant north of the border
The French restaurant north of the border

First ink, then write

Jane Brown (Nigeria 26) taught at the Katsina Teachers College and later wrote a book about her experience. Alhaji: A Peace Corps Adventure in Nigeria. Here is Jane grinding pods into powder to make ink for her rough draft (or not).

Jane Brown making ink
Jane Brown making ink

Friends

Debby Losse and Jane Brown, not in that order.

Jane and Debby
Jane and Debby

Jane Brown and her friend Naomi Coe (both Nigeria 26), with Diane Hall (Nigeria 17)

Jane, Naomi Coe and Diane Hall
Jane, Naomi Coe and Diane Hall

There were three vacations in the school year, the longest being during bazara, the hot season of April & May. PCVs could not leave Africa, in theory. One long break four of us traveled by car to Lagos and then west along the coast through Dahomey (now Benin), Togo, Ghana and Ivory Coast.

Diane Hall and Debby Losse, somewhere on the coast of West Africa.

Diane and Debby
Diane and Debby

Lagos Harbor

Debby and John Losse, Lagos Harbor

Debby and John Losse
Debby and John Losse

The leather handbag was sort of standard. Made of thick hides from the North, they held up well and could always be repaired if needed. Also note John's "empire builder shorts", which the Hausa tailors had learned to make for the British.

You had to find style where you could. Here's Diane (Nigeria 17)

Diane with style
Diane with style

A Star Specimen gives you power

The bush mechanics were amazing in their ability to keep our little Honda 50's running, but it didn't hurt to be handy: Budd Hall (Nigeria 17) was handy.

Budd Hall - Mr. Fixit
Budd Hall - Mr. Fixit

Some things were beyond repair. The Peace Corps was required by Congress to "buy American" if possible. They sent over Jeep Wagoneers and Chevy "Carryalls" with 2-ply tires. Big mistake. Here is a the "yard" behind the Peace Corps Office in Kaduna. You wonder why they hauled them back, or did they not make it out of Kaduna in the first place?

Jeep Wagoneer rejects
Jeep Wagoneer rejects

Other friends

Other friends included Art Harvey, who had a private contract at a school in Kano.

Art Harvey
Art Harvey

One day we decided to get away from it all and take a picnic out near Runka, where there was reputed to be a herd of elephants. We saw baboons and monkeys and signs of elephants (very BIG signs), and then decided to have a picnic up on some rocks, which appeared to be secluded from the nearby village. And it was, too, but not for very long. Pictured are Debby and a Danish couple, Kaare and Henny Brons.

A picnic
A picnic


When it was all over in August, 1968, we headed home. Instead of a charter, as Nigeria 22 had had on the way over, we could make our own itineraries. Mike Levine, Eleanor Epner, Art Harvey and the Losse's took a BOAC from Kano to Rome where they spent a few days before dispersing. There was a phrase for what we experienced: "Reverse culture shock".

Roman Forum
Roman Forum

Dick and Ann (née Hofer) Holmquist's Nigerian Photos

Ẹkaarọ! Se dada ni?

Sannu abokina. Barka da safe?


I hesitate to add much narrative, for whatever the photos stir in your imagination and memories has to be richer than this most abbreviated account. To fill out the narrative I have included some hyperlinks where relevant. These digitized photos were made from film slides using the VuPoint FS-C1-VP filmscanner. At the time we were in Africa the roads were usually unimproved, mostly dirt. It was difficult to get from place to place. One caught a lorry or hitched a ride (sometimes a very long wait.) Ann was stationed in Zaria; I was stationed in Ibadan. It was an incredible experience, for we were not only a network of volunteers, we were a network of friends who despite the vast distances involved managed to see one another when we had breaks and always knew we had a place to stay. Plus in training I remember a game of soccer the guys got together. I had never played soccer before in my life. I scored a goal --from the opposite end of the field. That was beyond incredible: that was a miracle.


Duke and I examining a soil sample
Duke and I examining a soil sample

Duke Deller (Nigeria XXV) was a large animal veterinarian posted at the University of Ibadan. I was at the University of Ife, also in Ibadan, teaching chemistry. We became friends. He brought back the Fulani hats we are wearing in this photo from one of his trips to Northern Nigeria.



Hmmm ....
Hmmm ....




In search of Colobus monkeys ....
In search of Colobus monkeys ....



It takes a village ...
It takes a village ...



We did it --and you owe us lady.
We did it --and you owe us lady.

This jungle trek was in search of a colony of Colobus monkeys. Falling into the river stream was not necessarily a minor event because Nigerian streams can be home to shistosomes which cause debilitating parasitic disease in humans. The kids thought it hilarious watching us crossing the actually decent log bridge, but helped when needed by reaching out a steadying hand. If we were going to see any monkeys we quickly had to lose our paranoia because most of the streams we had to cross on this trek didn't have bridges. We took off our shoes and waded across.



Outskirts of Ibadan
Outskirts of Ibadan



Oshogbo
Oshogbo

Suzanne Wenger was an Austrian artist who died early this year (2009). She was a remarkable woman and sculptoress who came to Nigeria in 1960 as a young woman, saw how modernization was destroying traditional Yoruba culture, and set about reclaiming that culture in a very pesonal way. She became Yoruba herself and the priestess of the fertility shrine in Oshogbo. She sculpted entire hillsides --and even gas stations! I encourage you to click on the hyperlinks. This is a poor photograph of her work. Some of the best examples of her work can be found here. The Osun-Oshogbo Sacred Grove is now a World Heritage site.


The Riverbank Cafe
The Riverbank Cafe



Roasted maggots. They were good.  They tasted like custard eclairs.  I had two.
Roasted maggots. They were good. They tasted like custard eclairs. I had two.

On a break, an English volunteer asked if I'd like to share expenses with him for a few days vacation on the beach near Badagri. We had to boat across Badagri Creek to get to the sand. Once there it was a paradise. We were the only two people on it, a few abandoned palm plantations behind us, the Atlantic Ocean splashing against our feet. At night, away from the beach, the mosquitoes were ferocious even behind our mosquito netting. We took a riverine mail boat back to Lagos. It stopped at every small village along the riverbank, at everyone of which kids and adults would be selling their wares. I took the opportunity to eat. I asked myself when again in my life would I have the opportunity to eat roasted maggots.



But sitting under a tree drinking palm wine and eating cayenne-peppered barbequed land snails was better.
But sitting under a tree drinking palm wine and eating cayenne-peppered barbequed land snails was better.



Flame tree at entrance to Zarkin Tukur-Tukur compound
Flame tree at entrance to Zarkin Tukur-Tukur compound



Ann with English friend Dave
Ann with English friend Dave



Dave with his girl waiting for a ride
Dave with his girl waiting for a ride



In the desert North of Nigeria
In the desert North of Nigeria



LaVerne Majors
LaVerne Majors



Amina
Amina



Fulani young women
Fulani young women




Hausas at prayer
Hausas at prayer



Trekking to Idanre for the climb
Trekking to Idanre for the climb




Poseur
Poseur



The Idanre inselberg
The Idanre inselberg

Ann told me after the climb that she only made the climb because she thought I was testing her. I wasn't.



Trying to impress Ann, the woman I would marry.
Trying to impress Ann, the woman I would marry.

I had a lot to make up for. During training, she and I were in the same "Be there or else!" psychiatric group with Dr. Globus. The guys decided to mimic Dr. Globus by all bringing a cigar, and smoking it during one session. I put too much pressure on mine and it broke it half. Ann had the nerve to laugh! It was at that moment I decided I wanted to marry that woman to get even.



On top of Idanre ... well, sort of
On top of Idanre ... well, sort of

Now a tourist attraction one can climb steps to the top. Sad. One should have to earn one's way to things this pristine and beautiful. Wole Soyinka wrote Idanre a 25 page poem inspired by his first climb up these rock hills. It can be found in Idanre and Other Poems that was published in 1967 while Group XXII was in Nigeria.



Ann, trying to walk on water
Ann, trying to walk on water




Dick, in a piroque on the canal en route to Ayetoro
Dick, in a piroque on the canal en route to Ayetoro



Duke, in same piroque, helping us get there
Duke, in same piroque, helping us get there




Ayetoro
Ayetoro

Duke and I piroqued down to Ayetoro, a canal being the only land access to this town on the Atlantic coast. The word Ayetoro means World of Peace. It is also the name of an Afro-beat band. It was communist, in the catholic, not political sense, so money was useless, a good thing since Duke and I had so little. We arrived near evening and were fed and bedded for free despite the fact we had no real way of paying it back in labor since we were leaving the next morning. The Oba (town chieftan) had the only car in town and we were told he would on occasion drive it up and down the wooden road once or twice a day.




Ayetoro woman putting fish on a stick to smoke
Ayetoro woman putting fish on a stick to smoke



Young boy in Ayetoro fixing a fishnet
Young boy in Ayetoro fixing a fishnet

Recent pictureslook like there has been a decline since Duke and I were there some 40 years ago. For current pictures of Nigeria in general see Naijafinish's photostream

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