My eyes barely closed, other than taking necessary blinks, during my 18 hour trip to Accra*. That’s not to say I did not try to close them, but the anticipation and lack of leg room made it very difficult to sleep.
So, instead, the plane ride consisted of watching two movies, reading and looking around at the wide array of passengers, wondering what their trip entailed. Some people told me: one woman was going to surprise her family in Liberia, two men were going to an oil rig off the coast, a girl my age was volunteering to teach, countless individuals were involved in mission work and still others I had to guess.
When those same people asked me what I was going to do, I received a variety of responses. Most people were encouraging, telling me that it was a great opportunity, but a few were incredulous. “Why?” was an unexpected response I received from one American man. Unfortunately, due to my lack of sleep, I was at a loss for words.
And, obviously, once I stepped off the plane I was not going to close my eyes. There was too much to take in; my senses were overloaded. I fell into a deep sleep not long after arriving at my host’s lovely home.
Today I woke up much later than I had planned and headed up to the balcony to remind myself of where I was. I found the chickens next door highly amusing. Then I shifted my eyes to a man cutting down the branches on a tree with only a long, machete-like knife. (the noise from it was much more pleasant than a chainsaw)
I’ve been lucky enough to set up my internet and cell phone right away, and it’s a blessing to be able to call home. Now I need to sleep and get acquainted with my new time zone.
On a related note, it’s interesting to me that right around the time I arrive in Ghana, Ohio University signed an international agreement with the African University College of Communications in Accra.
*My trip was supposed to take 25 hours but, due to a cancelled flight, I was rerouted through Atlanta’s airport and then flew directly to Accra.