Dungu : ruins of a colonial castle


In the early mornings I managed to make some time to visit. Dungu is
pretty much cut off from the rest of the Congo, in the dry season it
takes three to five weeks by truck from the nearest town, longer in the
wet season. A small plane or two run by NGOs or missionaries come by in
the week.

The town itself is collection of huts under the mango trees strung out
along a river. As in many such areas mud huts rub up against crumbling
colonial brickwork interspersed with electricity pylons that have long
since lost their cables.

I was not expecting the castle. A neo-medieval brick pile looming out
of the mist over the river eaten up by the jungle. An old man
collecting wood in the overgrown courtyard said that it had been the
residence of the colonial Administrator and his first secretary. I
waded through the dew wet grasses and went in, or rather I hesitated
wondering what was in this hulk and then went in; It was a Walt Disney
sleeping beauty’s castle, stripped bare, empty except for birds and


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