Bozo in Mali – Masters of the River

One centimeter at a time. The boat is grounded in the middle of the Niger River. Its 50 occupants are either sleeping or watching two men in chest-deep water pry the boat with bamboo sticks. It’s moving slowly, but it’s getting there. One of them has scouted a deeper course, and now they’re pushing the boat filled with rice and travelers on the right path. This tedious ballet can take up to an hour, and repeat itself every 10 minutes. But Bozo are used to this in March, when the Niger is at its lowest. The Bozo people are a …