Part 1 of 3
Been trying to send this for 2 wks, not sure if the prob lies with this site or the stone age Internet cafe? So I'm breaking it into chunks. Enjoy xo
These last few weeks have definitely been weeks of firsts! The first time i have shared public transport with live stock, the first time I have waited over 2 hrs for a meal to be served, the first time I have taken a dog to the pub (and not had her asleep in a hand bag as a puppy), the first time I have sung and danced in public, the first time I have paid a police bride for no apparent reason (there have been reasons on other occasions), the first time I've showered without shoes on, had wine by the glass and seen elephantitice!!! And then there was Accra..........
The live stock we shared a tro with were 4 goats who were bound and gagged (they weren't really gagged but that would of made it so much more amusing) and placed under the seats. Love it!
Customer service is definitely not one of Ghana's strong points! To get a menu can take 20mins, to have your order taken can be the same amount of time, the generally you wait another 20mins to be told that the ingredients required to make your meal are not available.... So pick again (this is a really horrid and difficult task when you've barely eaten all week, hence been fantasizing bout this particular meal for days-yes that really is an extremely insensitive thing to say when most kids here only get one meal day but it's still a huge let down for me and my white western glutenous ways). Then there's the cooking time. I swear they only cook one meal at a time and I'm assuming over hot coals so that adds substantially to the delay! So, we waited 2 hrs after ordering the other day and they had forgotten to cook one of the 3 ordered items!!! Gold. Then when it comes to paying the bill at our local 'bar' where we get table 'service'... This usually involves a poke in the shoulder and a firm "give me my money!", "but we haven't finished yet", "you need to pay", "no worries love, since you asked so nicely..."
My host family has a pet dog, Hope. I was slightly intimidated by him for the first couple of weeks cause of the potential for rabies and fleas but the malnourished mangy little w*** has grown on me.... Eat your heart out Lilla! Anyway, Hope walks with us to our local 'pub' (which looks more like someones backyard) which is about a 10min walk from our house. He walks us there, then comes in and sits next to us scratches his fleas while we chat. It makes me miss lilla so much and wish that she could come to the pub with us and actually behave herself.
I taught a class if x30 3-5yr olds the other week (can you believe it Claire?!). It's school holidays here now and since kids go unsupervised at the best of times, Elvis has started a summer school program, which is just very casual classes to keep the kids stimulated and out of trouble. A heap of little ones rocked up on one of the first mornings so some how I got roped into looking after them! So I started with the ABC, which they got but as I moved onto basic words to work on sounds and symbol recognition I realized they didn't know English, and i was getting nowhere. ENTER Singing and dancing!!! There was the Hokey Pokey and a number of different songs with actions. First of all, if you know me well you'd be aware that my greatest fear is public speaking, so teaching is definitely not an interest of mine! But they were 3-5yr olds so I thought I'd be fine (and I was). Second point: I CAN'T sing to save my life!!!!! but I DID and did it in front of 30 people! Third and most shocking point: I was dancing! Again, if you know me well you'd know I'm not a big fan of dancing and i suck at it. What makes this ohh sooo soo so much more unfathomable here, I'm white! White people can't dance! That was the worst part about the class, having 3-5yr olds looking at me with shear confusion with "what is she doing?" written all over their faces... "dancing? Is that dancing? Is she meant to be dancing right now??!!" yes kids, I wasn't born with the rhythm gene that you all posses!
On all of the main roads out of major towns in Ghana are police checks. They (so I believe) are aimed at checking licenses and registration but most importantly checking cars aren't over loaded with passengers. The roads are mayhem, no one wears seat belts so add excess passengers to the list and you have major road safety and excessive death toll issues! In 2006 1856 people died on the roads! So every day to