riding a wave of nostalgia to freetown and back

Sierra Leone’s international airport is not in Freetown. By land, it would take many hours to make the trip. Some months ago, there were four options for travel from the airport to Freetown:

1. UN Helicopter (for people with UN passports)
2. Commercial helicopter
3. Hovercraft
4. Ferry

However, in recent months the hovercraft caught fire and has been grounded since (no one was hurt, but luggage was lost). The commercial helicopter has been grounded (I’m not sure why, but I can guess). I don’t have a UN passport, so I take the ferry. (One can also take a tiny speedboat, but I haven’t figured out the logistics yet.)

The last couple of ferry rides, the first-class cabin (costs US$1.50) has been playing a slew of awesome 80s music videos, so awesome that I couldn’t help but sit and watch (rather than wander the deck):
• La Isla Bonita, by Madonna
• Sexual Healing, by Marvin Gaye (they just played the beginning of this non-sensual video – despite the title – and then skipped ahead)
• We Are the World, by everyone in American pop music in the 80s. A bunch of other people in the cabin – all Sierra Leoneans – knew the lyrics to this one and were mildly swaying and mouthing the words.  (You know I was, and people were loving the fact that I was loving We Are the World.)
• The Greatest Love of All, by Whitney Houston
• Sacrifice, by Elton John
• Everything (I Do), by Bryan Adams
• and then nothing less than a UB40 concert video

My 80s craving has been satisfied for at least two hours.

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1 thought on “riding a wave of nostalgia to freetown and back”

  1. I could sing along to every one of those songs, except the Marvin Gaye. Mr. M wants to know – isn’t Sierra Leone one of the most dangerous countries in the world?

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