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TYPICAL GAMBIAN VOCABULARY

Afra : grilled meat or chicken or the place it is sold.

Bantaba: a gathering of people mostly under a big shady tree where they while away the time chatting, drinking china green tea or simply watching passers-by. This has become, a small outdoor construction for shade, where we share meal or take a drink

Bolong: river in Mandinka; it also means a creek, a tributary or a much smaller river.

Boubou: the gown-like dress worn by both men and women. The sewing differs according to the sex.

Chop: carries a different meaning from English as it refers to ones share of the local meal.

Chop shop: a small restaurant where local meals are sold.

Griot: a traditional musician and praise-singer. Historically a griot sang the praises of the African king, advices him and was then preserver of the oral traditions.

Grigri: pronounced greegree, it is a charm or amulet worn above the arm, across the chess, around the waist or on the head. It is meant to ward off evil, provide strength and good luck or virility.

Groundnut: peanut

Harmattan: a dry wind that blows between December and February. It blows from the north and sometimes carries small particles of sand from the dessert and creates a hazy atmosphere. It also dries the skin by exatracting the moisture from it.

Insha’Allah: an Arabic word meaning, "if it pleases Allah"

Marabout: a Muslim holy man who could have spiritual powers to heal. it can also be a spiritual leader.

Toubab: a white person. Once a white woman or man meets children in the streets, she or he is greeted with "Toubab! Toubab!"

Bumster: lesser in number than the previous years due the security put in place, they sometimes molest you. Most of whom are unemployed or school drop-outs, these youth do anything to survive.