Africa: and a tale of magic, real magic

You know, perhaps, that I believe in magic.  Real magic. 

And so I can remember this story clearly, even though it’s been years.  I was in Senegal on assignment, and I was struggling with a problem.  No matter my attempts to address it – blatant ignoring, cajoling conversations, interventions by third parties, etc. – the problem wouldn’t go away.   

Now I had been to Senegal before.  Indeed, it had been my first posting overseas and so its cities and streets, its traditions and rituals held a certain memory for me.  So I wasted no time --  I took a boat out to Goree Island in the very first days. 

Now Goree Island is a place famous for its sad and then triumphant history.  It’s also famous for its fakirs or marabouts, traditional healers or witch doctors (depending on your persuasion and perspective).  So I went and I found him -- the Marabout/fakir/witchdoctor.  I told him my problem, and he nodded.   I can fix that, he said simply.  He then did some things and gave me some things.  And in the days and weeks to come, my problem went away. Just. Like. That. And it’s been gone until this very day.

If I want to keep the problem at bay, it is said that I must never tell anyone what the problem was or what  the fakir did to dispel it.  And so I won’t.  I will simply tell you that I believe that talismans, prayer beads and cowrie shells (believed to have intrinsic powers) have a  place around your neck and in your home.  Oh yes.  Yes, they do.

I bought this beautiful collection for you. Just in case you needed one or two.  I know I do.

Purchase any of these beauties for yourself or for someone going through a difficult time and needing a little magic. You can buy them right here.

Photos by the talented Natalie Opocensky. My favorite book, Maroc, by Albert Watson.