Finally finally finally, I’ve got a chance to sit, relax and write! This blog has been on my mind the entire time I’ve been here in Ghana not updating. I just haven’t had the time to stay still long enough to get my thoughts down, but the good thing is I’ve been keeping notes on things I want to share with you all.
I’m in Agogo Asante-Akim region of Ghana and thank the heavens the air is way cleaner than the exhaust-filled air of Accra. The one thing about the air here is they burn their garbage, so random times throughout the day and night the air there’s the stench of
barbecued plastic burning trash to deal with.
The weather is beautiful here. It’s a comfortable hot all day long. It’s currently their “cold” season because of the Harmattan. I don’t know how to use that word really, as in I don’t know if you’d say we’re in Harmattan season, or it’s Harmattan, or whatever. But basically Harmattan is a dry, dusty wind that makes the weather just that: dry and dusty. It’s a tiny bit cooler in the mornings and at night, but by no means sweater and jacket weather—well, by my standards. But don’t try telling that to the Ghanaian mothers who send their children to school in Christmas sweaters and bubble jackets as if it’s 30F degrees out.
I live in a compound with a few other teachers and a local family whose children attend our school. Our accommodations are surprisingly way more modern than I had anticipated. We have electricity, running water, and toilets that flush. The Mister and I have a spacious two-room unit that opens to the compound courtyard (as do all other rooms). Our rooms have painted cement walls and tiled floors—a beautiful upgrade from the raw mud floors and bare cement walls I had imagined.
There’s not as much wild life and creepy crawlies as I’d imagined. When I was in Panama, there were monkeys everywhere. They just lived in the trees in people’s backyards. I thought I would find the same here, plus a ridiculous amount of bugs and flies (for that I blame the 4am infomercials showing African children with flies on their face). To my relief there are no neighborhood monkeys, and maybe the Harmattan has something to do with the lack of pesky bugs. There is however no shortage of goats, dogs, chickens, guinea fowl, and lizards. And oh yea bats—but I’ll come back to that. The chickens and goats just roam the streets much like stray cats and dogs in the US. But they are not stray, they belong to farmers; they just roam the streets and return home whenever they feel like it. Anywhere from midnight on, the animals perform what I like to call, nature’s symphony. A howling dog will set off other howling dogs, which then sets off the roosters and the goat accompanied by the constant chirping of the bats… the hundreds of bats that live in our roof! Yes, we have bats living in our roof. It’s not really something I want to delve into anymore than that for my own peace of mind. They’re there, they’ve been there, and I guess as long we keep the peace with them, they’ll keep the peace with us.
SN: I actually wrote this post last week, and I'm just now getting around to publishing it. Seeing how I have little time to sit and write lengthy posts, I think I'll try shorter update posts to keep the blog current. We'll see!