Back home in Gambia, Amadou Jallow was, at 22, a lover of reggae who had just finished college and had landed a job teaching science in a high school.
But Europe beckoned.
And everywhere in his neighborhood in Serekunda, Gambia’s largest city, there was talk of easy money to be made in Europe.
He lives in a patch of woods here in southern Spain, just outside the village of Palos de la Frontera, with hundreds of other immigrants. They have built their homes out of plastic sheeting and cardboard, unsure if the water they drink from an open pipe is safe. After six years on the continent, Mr. Jallow is rail thin, and his eyes have a yellow tinge.
There is no short cut to prosperity in Africa or anywhere else. Build up your own.