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Photographs by
Christien Jaspars
At days end, as the sun penetrates back into the earth with awkward haste and I am on my way to a neighbouring village, I think back on the final chord of the fête de crépissage.

The old bricklayers of the Barey-ton take their ease in the shade of a tree, enjoying the afterglow of the prepared feast and discussing the mornings events. Did the Youboukaina helpers contribute the most to the smooth course of the second day of the crépissage, or was the contribution from the boys from the westernmost districts of the town the decisive factor in the good atmosphere?
"This is not our question to answer! Cest le Grand Dieu qui ce decide!" one of them decides. The "Inshallah, God Willing" of the rest indicates agreement. I felt the same feeling of acceptance as I packed my camera some time later. I cleared away my mattress and packed my other things into my dusty weekend bag.
I had waited for days here in Djenné for the big moment. Hours of arduous nightwatches on the flat roof of the bricklayer that I had befriended, Bayere Kouroumansé. The decision on the time at which the fête de crépissage would commence was only taken at the very last moment.