MamBabo (short for Maam [pronounced like “mom”, but the Wolof word for grandfather and grandmother] Babacar – he’s named after his grandfather): He is sooooo cute, rarely wears pants, loves eating – who could turn this cutey away from the lunch or dinner bowl? – and looks so much like his mother (my aunt).
Seekh Ohmar: He is my youngest “real” brother (son of my host father and host mother), spoiled rotten by his father, stubborn, and incredibly cunning (and sometimes not in a good way).
Most of the boys, from left to right: Seekh Ohmar, MamBabo, Ndari (son of a another aunt), Seekh Tidjan (older brother of MamBabo), Moussa (one of the three young Talibe boys that live and work with us), and Moussa (my other “real” brother and super sweet). I had to include this photo because I loved how cute they all looked getting themselves pulled together for the “photo shoot”. :)
Most of the boys again, with their formal faces on (smiling for a picture is a rare oddity here, if you haven’t noticed from my other photos of Senegalese people).
The boys again, plus Amadou #1 (standing behind MamBabo) and Amadou #2 (tallest, red t-shirt): these boys are the other two Talibe that live with us.
More boys: Ndaiga (son of my uncle and half brother of MamBabo and Seekh Tidjan; he is such a crazy fun kid) is holding MamBabo and standing next to a boy (one of the millions that roam around our compound when they get bored of studying in my uncles Islamic school – where kids go to learn Arabic and study the Koran, Islam’s religious text) and the other MamBabo in my compound (he is the son of another aunt who is staying with us now because she has two young twins and that is a standard Senegalese thing to do – to go back and live with your mom for several months when you have twins, or even just one child, because that way you can spend all your time taking care of your kids and don’t have to worry about cooking or cleaning or anything else).
Some girls and their bears, from left to right: Indu (this little girl already has a mind of her own and is left-handed, which causes problems when she tries to eat at the lunch or dinner bowl because the left hand is considered the “dirty” hand in this culture), Ami (the older sister of Indu and Ndari, she is super helpful and takes care of her younger siblings, even if she does boss Ndari around every once in a while), and Ndeye Khady (the granddaughter of the woman I am named after – hence she shares my name, too [Ndeye]).
Ndeye Khady and Souleyman (the son of family friends; his older sister often comes and helps my host mother cook lunch, do dishes, etc. when she’s not in school).