Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Looking in; looking out. Virtually all homes in the bustee have some kind of gate or door before one enters the main courtyard, where most of daily life unfolds. Many houses have only one or two rooms - a kitchen and a sleeping area, but the upscale neighbourhoods boast expansive two-storey homes. In almost all cases, the house is 'home' to several generations of an extended family.
Some courtyards are remarkably clean; others are strewn with household goods and garbage. But the view looking out is almost always the same - either a littered laneway or trash-filled swamp. Some people clearly take pride in having clean personal spaces but there is no sense of collective responsibility for public areas.

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