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Posts tagged ‘July 4th’

Fast Food Ghana Style and Other Reflections

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On our way home from Bouko school” we stopped at a road side stand to pick up lunch – roasted corn. Debi says this is the “McDonald’s of Ghana.”
Today was a 4th of July that will live a long time in our memories. It was a day of extreme contrasts. After the road became impassable for our van we got out and walked into the bush for about an hour where the lifestyle is ultra primative. We saw clusters of houses, what we call huts, usually just 3 or 4 together at a time, each cluster sharing one simple latrine. There is of course no electricity but also nothing to cover the windows and doors not even shutters.
We realize now that phrase, “Nobody here but us chickens.” has a definite basis.

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The grownups at these proto villages were off at the fields farming and all that remained near their homes were the chickens running around. We also came across turkeys, guinea fowl, pigs and cattle. We made positive fools of ourselves taking photos of these common farm animals! The witnesses to our folly were several school aged children who were not in school because there is no school close enough for them to walk to and a very inspiring Anglican priest who was our guide. He is a Ghanaian who chooses to serve in his homeland instead of taking his education and bolting to another continent.
We had delivered the coloring books about Being Strong to the primary school up the road and now were being taken into a place where a preschool is badly needed. We are delighted to begin to plan to fill that need.
BUT I want to reflect for a moment and appreciate that these people know how to make a life here using skills that I don’t have. They build their houses from mud and thatch, fence their livestock with found twigs and branches, grow their own vegetables and fruits, fencing with cactus plantings, milk their cows, butcher the goats, chickens, and other fowl, manage their larder without refrigeration, cook over outdoor fires, deal with compromised water, launder without running water. etc. etc.
I may know how to drive, shop and read, but I would be helpless in this environment!

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We ended this 4th of July quite literally on a high note with an intimate concert by Drew at our favorite hotel in Accra, the Hansonic. Electricity was in abundance and Drew’s Phil Jones portable amp that can be played in any country on any continent ¬†performed admirably. We made some new friends including one from Australia and two men from our home state of Maryland! We are delighted to celebrate with our Ghanaian friends that we have a common British heritage and are now independent. Their own Republic Day was on July 1.

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