Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Here are some of the things that I saw as I walked along the main road from the airport to the center of town a few hours before the Pope arrived: lots of people still washing, whitewashing or painting their houses; flocks of women (church groups or cultural clubs) in matching dresses, meeting up in advance of the motorcade; several convoys of armed soldiers heading for the airport; banners over the street reading, “Cameroon will be eternally grateful to Pope Benedict XVI”; posters of President Biya standing next to the previous Pope; dozens of Cameroonian and Vatican City flags alternating every 100 feet (for miles); bands of soldiers standing over those who were still clearing away piles of debris; excited school children walking home from school, having been let out early.

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