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A day with the Rastafarians

This Great African Adventure is coming to a close. It has truly been a wild and wonderful experience, one that will give me things to think about all of my days. I am SO looking forward to coming home. I, however, am not looking forward to two days of travel on the airplanes and in the airport, but I guess after two years of practice crammed close together on mini-bus taxis I should be well prepared. Maybe this flight experience will pass by like a breeze considering all of our prior traveling conditions… let’s hope.

We are currently in Accra taking care of the last minute things before heading to the airport tomorrow evening. If you want to find us on a map you can look for a section of Accra called Osu (at least that is where this Internet cafe is located). We are staying in a hostel in a NW suburb called Darkuman. Tomorrow we get to hang out for a bit and then our plane leaves in the evening.

Today’s adventures were memorable to say the least. We got up, after sleeping in a bit, and then caught a “tro tro” (minibus) to the Kaneshie Market and then another to the Central Post Office. Our goal was to head to the National Cultural Center.

The Cultural Center is where artisans from all over Ghana come to sell their pieces. My goal for the day was to find a nice djembe (drum). My dream, however,  was to sit down, meet the craftsman, and to learn a bit about the construction process, play together and really get to know them before walking away with the drum. I am very pleased to say that this is exactly what happened. In a kind of comical fashion.

Before Susie and I left to come to Africa the Peace Corps requested that Susie cut off her dreadlocks for fear that they may offend someone in our hosting country. We found out later that they would not have been a problem in SA but we wanted to honor PC and our relations with our new host country. Since this time Susie has wondered if it would be possible to get her hair re-dreaded while here in Africa. So, today as we walked into the Culture Center, we were greeted by a Rastaman named Dante. We got to chatting about his necklaces and such and I asked him about his hair (it’s dreaded of course). Did he know anywhere in Accra where Suz may be able to have it done?

Absolutely, was his response. In fact if we could follow him, his friend (another Rasta just down the way) could actually do it and has been known to do Obruni (white folk) hair before. In fact he had done a girl’s hair from Holland not that long ago. Since this was a desire that Suz had been talking about since the day her dreads were cut off, I knew this was no passing fancy. We poked around the market and then decided to seek out our new Rasta friends.

Actually let me step back a moment, before we entered the market we were greeted by a young fellow who introduced himself as a drum maker and  encouraged us to check out his shop. He was actually a true joy throughout our whole day at the market, calm, collected he was a pleasant voice of reason that kept us feeling like everything was under control. His drums were alright, but not exactly what I had been hoping for. However, he was able to find exactly what I wanted and walked me through the construction process. There were men working on drums up and down the row and their craftsmanship was beautiful.

We walked past the rows of wood carvers, drum makers and more to a small shop with just a few pieces being displayed. Here we were introduced to “Ghana Sta”. He is a professional drummer and Rastafarian. He called a friend named Joe who brought some “medicine” to help Susie’s hair lock-up. This “medicine” was actually a mix of lime juice (“lemons”) and raw eggs – lovely, eh? Keep in mind all these young guys (20 somethings) had dreadlocks and therefore all had something to add to the care and maintenance of the “dreadhead” style.

Joe brought out some string and began separating Susie’s hair into groups. He would twist the group and then wind thread around the group in order to keep it together. This process was repeated, over and over and over again. Finally he sprinkled the “medicine” from a plastic pop bottle with a hole in the cap. Once each group was dampened it was tied a second time and then re-medicated.

This whole process took maybe three hours, which gave me plenty of time to goof around. Ghana Sta gave me impromptu drumming lessons and we learned a decent amount about the Rastafari Movement. I was able to venture out across the market with the guys to get some good local “chop” (food) and then to come back and look at drums and meet some of the craftsmen. We truly enjoyed our afternoon. At one point we were even surrounded by quite a few fellows smoking joints and impromptu singing and expounding upon their great new insights about life, love and happiness. What a trip.

I walked away with exactly what I wanted, so did Susie and we had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon. Often going to markets where people are working hard to sell to the tourists can be stressful and way too much trouble for what they are worth, but today we blew off the people who we weren’t interested in, pressed the flesh with our new friends, and made a day of it. I must say if you are willing to spend the time, and get dreads, a day in the National Cultural Center can be a wonderful experience.

 
 

The Fabulous Final Five

Well, our roaming tour of Ghana via fellow Peace Corps Volunteers has come to a close. We’ve had SUCH a wonderful time getting to see this amazing country from a real perspective, and want to put out a huge THANK YOU to all of the volunteers who warmly welcomed us to their sites!!! Here’s a brief sum-up of our last five tremendous volunteer visits:

After returning from Larry’s site and staying in Tamale, we made our way east & south to Megan’s site in Kpondai. Megan is a science teacher at a secondary boarding school, and since she’s also the only female teacher at the school, she holds the position of House Mistress as well. I think she’s the busiest volunteer we saw on our trip! After teaching all day, she needed to go over to the girls dormitory for a meeting at 7pm, then return again at 9:30pm to do a final headcount for the night. She just never stopped! Megan’s not a teacher in the states, but she had an impressive commanding presence about her that created a lovely atmosphere of respect and kindness amongst her students. She takes her job very seriously and will be the first to tell you that all of the challenges she faces are the same reasons she loves what she’s doing. I (Suz) had a little “runny tummy” for part of the full day we were at her site, but it cleared up in time for Ben and I do a little leadership/teambuilding session with her Girls Prefects that afternoon. We had a blast!

We left Megan’s site to travel on what were reportedly some of the “worst roads in Ghana.” They were pretty bumpy and dusty, but other than us getting rather dirty, we made it just fine to Amber’s site in Kpando. Amber is a Small Enterprise Development (SED) Volunteer and a great cook! 🙂 We just stayed one night with Amber at this point, then left the next morning to go to Chris & Tami’s site in Donkokrom, across Lake Volta.

To cross the lake, we boarded a huge wooden canoe with an outboard motor that carried about 50 people. It was a pleasant hour-or-so ride across the lake, and not even that hot! Once we were on the other side, we caught a “tro” to Tami & Chris’s market town and met up with them there. They are both teaching at a large secondary boarding school with classrooms ranging from “pretty nice” to “we have a long way to go.” We had a chance to walk around their school campus and then spent an enjoyable day just relaxing at their place, sharing pictures & stories, and even watched a movie! I was once again not feeling well, this time with a fever and head cold, so I definitely appreciated a day to recooperate (I guess this African traveling wears me out!). 🙂 If we could say anything about Tami & Chris, they are fun, accepting, comfortable people that are just a joy to be around. We felt we could have stayed with them for days and never run out of things to talk about! But our journey continued to other exciting parts…

We left Tami & Chris to head back to Amber’s site for second night. This time we had the chance to visit one of her businesses, a talented women’s pottery group! After another enjoyable visit at Amber’s, the three of us left the next day to travel to Julie’s site in Ho. Julie is also a SED Volunteer who works with a large NGO that provides volunteer opportunities for tourists, sexual reproductive health education, microfinance training, and business development opportunities. Her “NGO House” that usually boards their volunteers was empty for the weekend, so we all got to enjoy the luxury of a shower, flush toilet, and full kitchen! Julie has a fun sense of humor and is a super-hospitable hostess. She kindly showed us around Ho, made a tasty Asian-style lunch, and then let us enjoy another relaxing day just kicking back and watching movies. It was great!

Our last stop on the journey around Ghana was Kyle’s site. Although we had a transportation miscommunication and nearly ended up in Togo trying to get to Kyle’s, we eventually made it and were enthusiastically welcomed into Kyle’s space. We “chopped” (ate) some local Ghanaian food at Kyle’s favorite “spot” (restaurant/bar), then took a tro out to his site. Kyle teaches math at a junior high school, he has a degree in engineering, and…he absolutely loves physics! Needless to say, he and Ben connected right away and had a tremendous time chatting about all sorts of things from “rotational stabilities” to the outer limits of the solar system. It was difficult to get a word in edgewise! Kyle loves visitors and was truly a joy for us both to hang out with. We got to see his school, meet his teachers, and check out his nearby market. He and Ben could have talked for many more days, but we needed to make our way back to Accra.

And now here we are, doing some last minute things and picking up a few more items before we fly out on Thursday. What an incredible adventure! Thank you, so much, to all of the fantabulous PCVs in Ghana who hosted us weary travelers from South Africa. We will remember you fondly and hope to keep in touch!

 
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Posted by on May 26, 2009 in Ghana Adventures

 

Rounding the Top

Hey, everybody! We’ve just rounded the top of our circle for Ghanaian travels. Tomorrow we’ll head east and then south until (in 12 days) we’ll be back in Accra to fly home!

Last Sunday we left Wa to travel to Vicky’s site, near Sandema, in the Upper East Region. Another early morning and bumpy bus ride later, we arrived and were greeted with huge hugs and smiles from Vicky. Such a sweet person with one of the best laughs ever! Vicky is a computer tech teacher at a secondary boarding school, so her site is actually on the campus. We had a wonderful time relaxing at her place, seeing the schools, visiting the nearby market, and tasting more local Ghanaian dishes. We tried ground nut soup (yum!) and “t-zed” – a local staple made from maize and cassava. Vicky even spoiled us with frozen “Milo” (hot chocolate), so we had fudge sickles!

While there, Ben put his “Village Tech” skills to work and got another computer working in the school’s lab. We also were given an opportunity to work with the “prefects” (student leaders) at Vicky’s school, so I put together a 2-hour challenge course program and Ben and I both facilitated. We played games, worked on communication and problem-solving, and talked a lot about leadership. There’s only so much you can do in 2 hours, but we had a blast and they seemed to, as well. 

Since Vicky was really the “top” of our circle, in terms of our travel route, we headed south from her site on Wednesday to stay at the Peace Corps Sub-Office in Tamale (Ghana’s 3rd largest town). On Thursday we took a “mini-bus” a few hours east to Larry’s site in Daboya… 

Larry lives in the neatest place! As we rode the bus there, we past villages and villages of round, thatch-roofed, mud-huts — one of my favorite images of Africa! At the end of the dirt road, everyone got out of the bus, unloaded their bags, and started walking towards the river. Why? Because Daboya can only be reached by CANOE! Isn’t that fantastic? There are no cars in Larry’s village, only bicycles and motorbikes. It was so fun, because the river isn’t all that wide, so we could see this village on the other side of the bank, with Larry standing under a tree to greet us. We boarded our long, wooden canoe (bags and all) and the canoe paddler took us across.

When Larry met us, we admired his beautiful traditional shirt, walking stick carved with African symbols, and unique round-shaped, cloth hat.  We quickly learned that these items were the attire of the chiefsin Daboya and that, yes, Larry had been made a chief! Now we had heard this rumor through other Peace Corps Volunteers in Ghana, but weren’t sure how much of it was truth until we arrived. Larry is indeed an actual chief of his village! He’s not the “Paramount Chief” (head chief), but he is one of about 30 men in his village who have been “enskined” as chiefs – they each sit on a special animal skin at their weekly chiefs meeting. Larry is the “Quarters Chief,” in charge of the housing facilities for the schools, and he has to wear his chief attire everywhere outside of his home and courtyard. He greets other chiefs in a special way and everyonehas to address him as, “Garba” the proper greeting for a chief. It’s a riot and he does the job so well!

Daboya (Larry’s village) is an amazing community. Everywhere you go, it just feels alive, friendly, and vibrant! The people are known for their art of traditional weaving and dyeing of fabrics, and you literally see weaving around every corner (or at least under every shade tree). There is one “intersection” in Daboya and a small market that always seems to be bustling with life. When not in school, children can constantly be found playing soccer (or “football,” written as “futball”) and other games in the random fields of grass, or learning the art of weaving. The village has a new computer training center where classes are currently being taught, and they even have an actual visitor’s center!

We had a chance to go on a “Weaving Tour” with one of the guides from the Visitor’s Center, and it was absolutely fascinating. Picture people sitting on stumps/stools with their legs extended in front of them, bare-feet. Between each of their big toes & second toes is a string of yarn and wooden circle to hold the yarn in place. The weavers’ hands move a large shuttle (spool) back and forth between two layers of yarn, as their feet alternate up/down positions to create the actual weave. The yarn, itself, is a site to behold! It is stretched out at least 50 feet in front of each weaver, tied around a rock that rests on a piece of metal, and as the yarn is woven into the pattern, the rock & metal slowly slide back along the dirt as a sled. (Hard to imagine? Don’t worry; we have lots of pictures to share when we get back!)

The tour included a look at the dying process for the yarn, too. Daboya uses three colors: white, blue, and black. The black is actually just a darker blue and both are made from natural indigo dye. We also got to meet the Paramount Chief, see the reportedly “Second Largest Mosque in Ghana,” and pose for a couple pictures for a brochure for Daboya’s Visitor’s Center. So much fun!

We had a great time just hanging out with Larry, too. He’s a barrel of laughs with endless stories to tell. He’s over 60 years old, but will be the first to tell you that he’s truly a kid at heart. We had such a good time with him, chatting away and playing cribbage – his favorite game.

We’re back in Tamale, tonight, and will leave tomorrow to head east to the Volta region. This next part of the journey is supposed to be pretty crazy, in terms of road travel, so we’re getting geared-up for long bus and “tro” rides and super-bumpy dirt roads. It’s also pretty remote, so we won’t be able to update again for another week or so. On the positive side, the Volta is supposed to be a beautiful area and the largest inland lake in the world!

Take care, all!

Suz

 
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Posted by on May 16, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

Xylophones and Soap

What do xylophones and soap have in common? Well Adam a PCV from Lawra in the Upper West of Ghana could tell you.

We headed out from Nicole’s rural village to go further north and west to the town/village of Lawra. We decided to kidnap Nicole and take her with us. Adam works with the District Assembly helping small businesses be successful. Two of his current projects revolve around an amazing traditional xylophone maker and a HIV/AIDs clinic that is making and selling Maringa Soap.

Yesterday we journeyed down the road to see Samuel’s workshop. Samuel has been making xylophones for many years (they are truthfully more like marimbas, but I’m not going to argue with a man who learned at the age of 9 to make them from his father and grandfather). The product is beautiful and rustic with a wonderfully unique tone and scale. The xylophones are made from wood and lashed together with animal skins. Below each of the keys hangs numerous hollow calabash shells which act as resonators to allowing the sounds to ring.

We had the fortune of sitting with Samuel as he showed us various stages of the process and allowed us to play a number of models. He even taught us a few traditional melodies and played songs that are used to praise the chief and to dance the spirits of the deceased off to the next life.

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I never stopped smiling as we played together in his workshop which sits in the midde of calabash, millit and groundnut fields. The experience is one I will never forget! If only we weren’t traveling by public transportation across Ghana for the next 20 days I would have taken one home. Awesome!

Adam also works with an HIV/AIDS clinic that was struggling for funding. An instrumental member of the clinic staff decided, hey we are dirty and need money let’s learn to make soap, use it and sell some to raise money for our ARV medications. So, that is exactly what they are doing. The patients who live at the clinic are using a nutritionally rich plant called Moringa to make a beautifully fragranced soap. When we came to visit they were clean out, but not to fret this is a good thing. The materials to make more were on the way but would not arrive until we had gone… shame. Still we hope this project continues and grows in success. The word has been spreading. In fact when we were down with Jon near Kumasi people in his village were talking about making the trip to Lawra to learn the process. Spread the soap, spread the love.

Adam also aparently was trying hard for the best host award. During our visit we enjoyed smoothies made from local mangos and bananas and smores cooked over his propane stove. These tasty-treats taste even better out in rural Ghana.

Tomorrow we are heading out at 4am to catch a bus to Bulgatonga in the Upper East, a 6-8 hour ride… we hope. We will “get down” at a village about 45 min west of Bulga and then hitch our way over to Sandema to visit Vicky. We look forward to our visit. Everyone says Vicky is just a beautiful person. She is an Information Community Technology volunteer who is teaching computers with minimal supplies. I hear that many of these volunteers have to teach about computers without a computer in the village. There is nothing like learning with no practical application right… Ghana is coming along but as with everywhere, change is slow.

Cheers,
Benjamin

 
 

From Accra to the Upper West

Hey, all! Wow, since we last wrote we visited 3 other Peace Corps Volunteers in Ghana and traveled from the south end of the country to the north. (Ghana is roughly the size of Oregon, in case you’re wondering). We’re currently at an internet cafe’ in Wa, a town in the Upper West region of Ghana. So how did we get here?

First, we met Suzanne (volunteer) in Accra on the 27th and headed out to her site in her friend’s private, air-conditioned car (amazing!). Suzanne lives in a beautiful, big, non-typical Peace Corps house, in a gorgeous village surrounded by rolling hills of green. And if I thought I had a lot of energy, I’ve got another thing coming! Suzanne is 39 years old and has already lived an amazing life, doing everything from being a rafting guide to teaching yoga to working in business to living in Japan for 8 years.  

First day at her site, we went on a beautiful hike in the jungle-like, nearly tropical rain forest. Ben and I of course love getting outdoors and hiking, but we normally don’t do so in hot, super-humid climates, let alone hot, super-humid climates on a 3 hour hike that is mostly uphill. Needless to say, we were exhausted, but Suzanne was incredible! When we stopped to attempt to catch our breath in the wet air, she would hike on ahead then turn back around to hike up with us just to keep herself moving. It was a blast. Made it back from the hike as it was just starting to get dark, and stopped by a cute little cafe’ in her village to have something cold to drink before returning to her place.

One of Suzanne’s projects is working with a women’s beading group. They make beads in their village and have been selling them for years, but they wanted some input on how to use hemp and the local grass, rafia palm. So Ben and I joined them for their meeting and showed them a couple of hemp/bead patterns they could use to make necklaces and bracelets. Before we left her village, the chairman of the beading group kindly gave us a boxite necklace and bracelet to thank us for our assistance. We were overwhelmed by their generosity and their work is so beautiful! Suzanne also is working on a cool bamboo bicycle project and we had a chance to see the workshop where they’re made.

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On the morning of the 29th we left Suzanne’s site to head to Jon’s place further north. Jon lives in a rural village about 45 minutes (driving) from Kumasi, one of the larger towns in Ghana. His home, nestled within a Habitat for Humanity community, has no electricity or running water. He currently draws his water from a well. He has a neat space, though, with two bedrooms, a small kitchen, a toilet, and a “bathroom” (concrete floor with a hole at the back – common for volunteers). His newest addition to his space is an adorable PUPPY! If we could say anything about Jon, it would be that he is well integrated in his community. Adults, children, everyone seems to love him to death and he is impressively comfortable just hanging out and chatting with whoever comes his way. He eats dinner with one of the families in the village and several of the people seem to consider him part of their own family. A cool project we got to help out with at Jon’s site was painting a world map on the wall of a building! Most of it was done, already; we mainly helped with outlining and lettering, but it was fabulous. (Ben felt right at home after working on the HIV/AIDS mural in our village for countless hours!)

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We left Jon’s on the 1st and stayed one night at the Peace Corps Sub-Office in Kumasi (they actually have a house for volunteers to sleep in when they’re there!). We had an awesome thunder storm, that evening, and met a bunch of other volunteers from Ghana and Togo. At 4am the next morning we went to the bus station to catch a car to Wa…At 8:30am we were actually on the road! Some people have taken 23 hours to make this journey, due to transport issues, so we were pleased when we arrived in Wa at only 3pm.

Nicole met us at the bus station and showed us around Wa a bit. We caught a taxi out to her site and spent the next 4 days checking out her village. Other volunteers had told us, “Whoa, Nicole’s really rural!” Truth is, she’s not all that far from a town, but her village is very small (350 people) and the most remote\primative we’ve seen so far.  She lives with a family in a concrete compound. With only one small room to herself, Nicole is limited in space, but she has a terrific attitude and doesn’t seem to mind…at least not too much. She has her own outdoor “toilet’ (hole in the ground) and “bathroom” (hole on the bottom of the back wall), in an enclosed concrete floor and mud-brick structure. Most of the houses in her village are made of mud and thatch, with some larger concrete houses.

School is out on holiday right now, but Nicole had invited students from the middle school in the next village over to join us on the 4th for “special activities.” We didn’t know what to expect, but what started with only 1 boy ended with nearly 40 people! Ben and I led a number of games, I gave a brief self-defense lesson, Nicole (an environment volunteer) taught about Moringa – an amazingly nutritious plant that is easy to grow, and we ended with a discussion about HIV/AIDS and male/female condom demonstrations. Another volunteers, Diana, joined us for the program, too, so it was one big party!

After the program at the school, the four of us went to greet the “old man” in the village, a wise elderly leader in their mosque, who claims to be nearly 100 years old. We asked him a number of questions about the village and his life and (through a translator) were able to hear his stories and words of wisdom. At the end of our time with him, one of my favorite moments in Africa happened – As a gift to his visitors, he presented us with a LIVE chicken! It was handed to Nicole, who accepted it very graciously, attempting to hold it on her lap by grabbing its legs, while Ben, Diana, and I busted up laughing on the other side of the circle. Not only would this have been humorous, anyway, but Nicole, Diana, and I are all vegetarians! It all worked out just fine, though, as Nicole later gave the chicken to one of the other families in the village and they invited us over to share it the next evening.

The same night of the school program and chicken-giving, we heard sounds in the distance of singing and dancing. We went over to check it out and found a group of kids playing and dancing in a circle in the moonlight. What a beautiful “I’m in Africa” moment! We joined them in their dances (okay, I think it was mostly me) for a while, then returned to Nicole’s.

The next morning we were awakened with a glorious event worthy of celebration…RAIN! The storm clouds rolled in, the sky turned dark, and the rains came tumblin’ down. Drip, drop, drip, drop…bigger drops…faster drops…thunder…lightening, before we knew it water was pouring off the tin roof and filling up buckets below! Nicole even washed her dishes in the rain and Ben (tried) to fill up his water bottle – by the time he put it outside, there wasn’t enough time to fill it all the way. After about 2 hours of downpour, the rain stopped and we were left with a wonderful sticky, mud-filled, COOL (as in temp) village – Wahoo! The rest of the day was pretty much spent at Nicole’s, hanging out and relaxing; we even took naps! It was nice to have a day to kick-it after so much traveling and going-going-going.

This morning (May 6th) we were invited to a gathering in the “town center” (big tree) for traditional singing and dancing by the women and children in the village. Ben called it a “tribal dance party!” Many of the dances were similar to what we had seen the children doing in the moonlight two nights before, but this time there were more rhythm instruments and it was still neat to see. Nicole, Ben, and I were brought into the circle a few times to attempt their traditional dancing and share a bit of our own dance-styles. I loved it! Dancing is such a beautiful thing, isn’t it? It frees the spirit, brings so much joy, connects you to earth and music and others, you just can’t help but smile and laugh and enjoy the gift of the moment. 🙂

Well, we’re staying in Wa, tonight, and tomorrow head northwest to visit another PCV, Adam. Let the African roller-coaster continue!

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

Cape Coast

We returned from Matt’s site, near Cape Coast, yesterday, and are back in Accra. Matt’s site was beautiful! He lives in a village along the main highway, surrounded by lush jungle-like trees and palms.

On Friday we enjoyed getting to see his home and school and meet some people in his village. Then on Saturday, the three of us went to Kakum National Park and experienced the Canopy Walkway! It’s seven 40m high suspension bridges in total, nestled above the canopy of Kakum National Forest. Absolutely gorgeous! Apparently it’s the only canopy walkway in Africa, built by two Canadians. After doing the walkway, Matt took us into Cape Coast (about 45 minutes from his site) to eat lunch at his favorite spot, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and next door to one of the slave castles. It was fantastic – definitely our favorite bought food in Ghana, so far. We had “Red Red,” which is fried plantains and beans, a very tasty and hearty meal!

We went back to Matt’s site in the evening, ate some more plantains with homemade guacamole for dinner (yum!), and left Sunday morning to return to Accra. I think Matt spoiled us on our first visit to a Ghana PCV. He was the most hospitable and gracious host you could imagine. He has two rooms (and two beds!), so he gave us the larger, more comfortable one, and he made us all kinds of delicious food. He’s a math/computer guy, too, so he and Ben had a lot in common!

This morning (Monday), we’re leaving Accra for our next visit, Suzanne’s site. She seems really excited about us coming and is already planning to “plug us in” as volunteers, helping with different things in her village. We’re not exactly sure what to expect, but are up for anything!

We are both doing well, but get really exhausted from the heat, humidity, and traveling. Hopefully we’ll be able to do this for a whole month! 🙂 It’s an amazing opportunity and an exciting adventure, to say the least… Not quite sure when we’ll have internet access, again, since we’re not coming back to Accra until the end of our trip, but hopefully we’ll find internet cafe’s along the way.

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

Ghana Goodness

Hello everyone,

We are safely in Ghana! We flew in yesterday via Joberg from Nairobi. It was quite a day of travel but we came into Accra about 9:30pm.

Today we spent the day exploring the city but tomorrow we will move on to start of PCV visits. It is now 10:45pm. The weather is humid… very humid and the temp is over 90. Hopefully tomorrow we we be more acclimated.

In our exploration today we took a tro-tro (mini-bus taxi) to the city center and got out in the middle of the largest open-air market in the country. People were everywhere and we saw everything you could possibly imagine from live snails the side of my fist, to pigs feet being butchered right on the street. We also saw countless stands selling soap, clothes, luggage, toiletries and really everything. Thousands of people swarmed around us. I felt like an ant on an anthill. It was wild.

We took a respit in a memorial for the first president of Ghana and had dinner looking over the Atlantic Ocean. Can’t go wrong with that.

 
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Posted by on April 23, 2009 in Uncategorized