I’m not sure I’d ever heard anyone use the phrase ‘Drogba’s Country’ when I selected it for this blog. But it was pretty clear that the only thing most people knew about Cote d’Ivoire back in 2011 was that it was the birthplace of Didier Drogba. Football stories were almost the only times the country was referenced in the English-speaking media. Ivorians around the world would see quizzical looks around the world when they mentioned the name of their country, but if they said Drogba, that transformed into smiles and handshakes. My wife uses it frequently.
But I was little surprised just now hearing the blog’s name referenced by none other than the Queen of England (perhaps a regular reader) from the lips of Ivorian president, Alassane Ouattara in this video interview (1:24):
“There are specific events which put a country on the map. For example, we have one of the world’s best soccer players, Drogba. He puts Cote d’Ivoire on the map…When I met the Queen of England three years ago, I said ‘Your Majesty, I’m the President of Cote d’Ivoire’ and he said ‘Ohhhh, Drogba’s Country’.”
I won’t comment on some of the other statements in the video, including that Ivorians now are perfectly bi-lingual.