4 October 1973
Dakar, Liberté IV
Thank you kindly for your letter with the clipping about Mopti, Mali. I must confess I haven't excelled in letter writing this year. Somehow I can never find a pen that works.
The "collège" put in a hot water heater for me so no more cold showers. My meager house has turned into a Hotel. I also bought a new motorcycle, a baby Peugeot. It's a nicer bike than the last one. I paid 59,000 CFA [Banque Centrale des États de l'Afrique de l'Ouest, "Central Bank of the West African States"] for the new one and sold the old to a Malian for 12,000 CFA.
I've been out to Gorie several times this past month and I'm going out today for a picnic. There's a Senegalese painter there now who has become internationally famous, Souley Keïta. A friend of mine bought 3 of his watercolors for 25,000 CFA $125.00! [The inclusion of this last sentence, tells us that the exchange rate was about 100 CFA = 50¢, if my math is correct.]
School begins on the 15. I'll be teaching 4é again. Glad that date's coming soon.
Well, hope you're all well. Say hello to Grandma for me. Love and Affection want you to know they say hello. – Joe