Fishing in a Garbage Dump Pond

(story continued from previous post)
Near noontime we headed home. You were hungry and Zorro the donkey was stalling more and more often.  My whispering magic was definitely wearing off. On the way, we stopped by a garbage dump to watch boys fishing with mosquito nets. Rain water had seeped into the deepest part of the dump, creating a small garbage-filled pond. Yuck!  Catfish apparently lived at the bottom, and the brave (or crazy) boys dove deep into the black waters to retrieve their catch. One of the boys ran over to us, proudly showing off a poor flailing fish. You, of course, wanted it for dinner. Fassely wanted to join the boys fishing. I whispered in Zorro’s ear to take us home. Meanwhile, I tried not to dwell on the health of these boys, reminding myself that some causes… I simply have to let go.

As we arrived at the small mosque between the first and second laterite roads, near my favorite back alley, Arouna proclaimed, “There are crocodiles behind that wall over there.” “Yeah, whatever” was my dismissive reply, walking on. I was eager to get home. “Mommy, mommy, I want to see the crocodiles!” you yelped, trying to slide off Zorro’s back. “Arouna’s just joking, aren’t you Arouna?” I looked over to the 12-year-old boy, pleading with my eyes for him to stay quiet. “No I’m not,” he declared. “You wanna go see them?” I gave in. We attached Zorro and followed Arouna around the public water fountain that stood behind the mosque to a low adobe wall, covered with wire fencing and rubbish. “Come look!” Arouna ordered.  Peering through the thick fencing, and into a garbage heap, there I spied two fully-grown Niger River crocodiles. “What in the world?!”…