Krista KapralosFebruary 2, 2010 11:36Updated May 30, 2010 12:19
SEGOU, Mali — Usually, nothing much changes in this dust-choked West African city.
Families live in mud-built huts along the Niger River, where fishermen in paddle-powered boats cast nets for catfish and carp. The weekly market announces itself by sending out a pungent stench, from pile after pile of cured fish. Most of the traffic amounts to donkeys pulling precarious cart loads of millet and sheep; Men use switches, prods, and clubs, to spur the beasts forward. Segou is Mali’s second-largest city, but life here is stuck, in many ways, in a pre-modern era.