“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
– Mark Twain
It’s a scary thing to do. I know I have had some doubts along the way that I’d be able to make this trip on my own, but I’m so grateful that I did. As my times in Ghana nears its end, I’m surprised at how familiar I’ve become with my surroundings.
When I hop in a cab and ask the driver, ‘We’re near Adabraka, right?’ I often get shockingly pleased looks. They’re happy I’ve figured my way around (for the most part), but maybe just a little sad that I now know a fair rate for most trips and have opted to take tro-tros to save money.
I’ve also picked up a little bit of Twi, a language commonly spoken in Accra. When I meet knew people, typically a daily occurrence, they often ask, “Wo ho te sεn?” (meaning “How are you?”) followed by “Yε frε wo sεn?” (“What is your name?) I’m able to answer those two questions, which usually amuses my new acquaintance.
The chickens and goats wandering around still amuse me. I don’t think that will change. I continue to take pictures of them, which I’m sure is odd to the locals but I am used to stares at this point!
Learning and exploring
Yesterday I went to the Eastern Region for the first time, a mountainous area of Ghana. The town of Koforidua is nestled in between mountains, so we took some time to hike partially up one of them. To get there we had to traipse through people’s property, which didn’t seem to bother anyone.
Along the way we also saw a range of vegetation and plants. Did you know this is how pineapples grow? I didn’t!
Plantains are very common here and grow in an interesting way. The purple part of the plant, as I understood it, nourishes the plantains and gets smaller as they multiply and grow further down. The bananas, below, grow similarly but look a little different.
We also saw a cocoa tree, which grows pods that hold the cocoa beans. Climbing the tree is dangerous, for both the person and the tree, because its branches are weak. Therefore, a long pole with a knife on the end is used to remove the pods that turn orange when ripe.