This flag, as you’ve noticed, quite captivated me — it’s visible from so many parts of town, and provides a unifying central image as one wanders the streets and paths of Calabar, something I was so delighted to be able to do that I ignored the sweat drenching my shirt and walked endlessly. Herewith a few more shots of contemporary Calabar.

The first time I saw — in Port Harcourt — a book vendor balancing a stack of books nearly as tall as himself on his own head, I was most impressed. Now I’ve become as accustomed to that as I am to the traffic here. The tree, above, is a bus stop — desintaitons all indicated on the sign to the left of the tree.

Just north of Calabar along the Cross River, surrounded by rubber plantations, is a development called Tinapa – which is trying hard to be “Africa’s premiere business resort and destination,” or something of the sort. It was hypothetically opened a year ago or so, but it seems the shops still aren’t selling anything because, according to one article I’ve read, they haven’t settled the import and selling permits yet. This may be code for “they haven’t bribed the right people yet,” but it’s hard to know. Tinapa also wants to become an important site for Nollywood — Africa’s largest film industry is based in Nigeria. Hence the gorilla on the round dome.

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