Budget VooDoo - African Village for Ten Bucks
At the entrance to this compound a sign reads, " You Are Leaving the United States and Entering the Yoruba Kingdom, Oyotunji Village ". Since the respective continents are not contiguous, this already sounds somewhat suspect. The fact that this border checkpoint is in Beaufort County, SC, does some violence to the illusion, but we go forward and enter "Africa" anyway.
Our greeter and guide is pictured at the side of the GT. The message board under the stop sign asks visitors to blow their horn. Our greeter-guide did a pretty good job of blowing his. He was cordial, inviting and granted permission to photograph the village as long as the photos were not for commercial purposes, that is, not for profit. He then rounded up a few visitors to form a tour and collected Ten Dollars (US) from each person.
As we were conducted through the village our guide's commentary took a convoluted path weaving first through interpretive perhaps extemporaneous accounting of African lore then swerving back into contemporary low country South Carolina anecdotal references. His rich cultural tapestry went uninterrupted by even one common thread. Perhaps he was demonstrating Vachel Lindsay's classic poem, " The Congo ":
THEN I SAW THE CONGO, CREEPING THROUGH THE BLACK,
CUTTING THROUGH THE FOREST WITH A GOLDEN TRACK
Walk with care, walk with care,
Or Mumbo-Jumbo, God of the Congo,
And all the other
Gods of the Congo,
Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you.
It was an enjoyable visit, but we felt just a tad hoo-done.