In a big city like Bouaké, it often happens that little children - three, four or five years old - get lost. In fact, in this city, as in many others in Africa, children, even very young ones, are in the street all day, sometimes left to their own devices. They are often children on holiday who get lost, they do not know the city and are themselves unknown. They walk, sometimes for long distances and get lost.
When parents notice that a child is missing, and after a quick tour of the neighborhood, they come to see a jembe player. After negotiating the price of the service, the drummer takes a dunun and walks, first in the nearby area, then over a wider and wider perimeter. The tapper voluntarily plays "messily", so that one does not confuse his game with that of a festive performance. Generally, a child is found very quickly thanks to this method, with which no cell phone can compete, even the most sophisticated.
The tapper who offers himself is very discreet in the preliminary negotiations with the parents. This kind of service is indeed well paid, the amount of the reward being able to go up to 10.000 CFA (15 Euros), which is a big sum for a dunun player who will probably only earn 2 or 3000 CFA by playing in a traditional party.
The children who are found have always taken refuge in a courtyard, sometimes spending the night there, and the police are rarely called in such situations.
Return to top Home page
| | | | | |