Monday, June 22, 2015


Beigna,beautiful Beigna.
Keita phoned me this morning, just when I had written about how great life was at the moment.
I had somehow felt that of course things could not continue on this great joyful wave for very long...and I was right. Keita called.
Beigna died yesterday, buried in a collapsing mine shaft in the gold fields of southern Mali.
 Beigna was there at the very beginning of our life in Djenne. He was the fun, kind, lovely but impossible barman at Hotel Djenn√© Djenno who was sacked and reemployed  a hundred times. Finally he knew he could no longer come back and he left to find fortune in the goldfields like so many before him.
We are so sorry. Keita is so sad- Beigna was his 'Petit'...

(see 'Beigna' in blogsearch above+ see 'The pursuit of Dreams in the Goldfields of Mali' )


Blogger David said...

Sophie, that's terrible news. A reminder of how cheap life still is out there, right? Our love and thoughts to Keita and you.

7:57 PM  
Blogger Tabor said...

I remember your roller coaster ride with this young man. I am sorry as he was clearly a prominent part of your life there.

11:11 PM  
Blogger Susan Scheid said...

The terribly sad and the wonderfullly good so often go hand in hand. It's hard to keep one's balance, isn't it? Perhaps it can be a small solace that you keep the memory of Beigna alive for us here.

11:37 PM  
Blogger Gilliane said...

Sophie, Such sad news. My thoughts are with you. G xxx

10:34 AM  
Blogger mary said...

OH, so sorry to hear about poor Beigna. Wasn't he your undercover agent in an earlier blog? A tragic waste of a life gold digging while full of hope with such low chances of success. But maybe better a life spent trying than not taking opportunities.Pushing the boundaries is always admirable and we should commend Beigna for trying. So sorry for you and Keita who have this sorrow to share especially when you are not together.

7:33 PM  
Blogger toubab said...

Thank you all! still very sad...Mary, it was Maman, not Beigna, who was my 'undercover agent' in the goldfields of Mali for the article we wrote together (blog on Jan 7 this year)
I tried until the last to get up to you in the borders , but no time yet again! And another problem I have no contact for you! Please write me email on

2:28 PM  

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