Yesterday, Gillian (another Peace Corps Volunteer living in Nkongsamba) and I got invited to be guests on Nkongsamba FM. Every afternoon from 3-4pm is an ‘English’ talk radio section called Palla Palla Boy, hosted by Lawal. Lawal attended our PSA Radio Conference, and we met him there.
As it turns out, the hour long English program is actually in Pidgin. Pidgin is a form of English, but, if you don’t know Piding, knowing English doesn’t necessarily help you. Our lack of understanding in Pidgin made it somewhat interesting — “I am not getting you” translates to “I don’t understand” which was said often as we didn’t really understand the questions being asked of us.
The daily topic was education, as yesterday marked the first day of school in Cameroon. The first half hour of the program was introductions, songs, sound effects, and local updates. The second half we were asked about the Cameroonian education system, three different callers called in and gave their opinion of the education system, and then we were finished. Gillian and I maybe said a total of 5 sentences each. We were relieved that we didn’t have to carry the program! It was definitely a ‘Peace Corps’ experience — I doubt I would ever be invited to speak on education on an American radio program!
While I don’t think we really contributed all that much to the program, it is always a good thing to get Peace Corps a little more known in Nkongsamba and work the radio staff. Plus, I can’t complain about sitting in an air conditioned room for an hour! Here are a couple pictures from the afternoon…
In the studio at Nkongsamba FM. Lawal, the host, is on the left.
On the radio station’s deck afterwards: posing with the beaded shell necklaces they gave us as a thank you.