Sunday, August 30, 2009

Hi again!
Amazingly enough I have made it to the internet cafe two days in a row-so now I can hopefully write a post catching up on some stuff that I haven't already had a chance to write about.

First though I will write about today. Today we went to Elmira which is about 15 minutes drive from cape coast. I realized that I wrote that cape coast was a city yesterday, and I don't want to mislead you- though these two towns are probably the biggest tourist attractions in Ghana, neither of them are much bigger than a suburb in the states that has a downtown shopping area. Everything is still sold in stall form and most everything is one level Also it is pretty hard to find a restaurant that isn't somehow attached to a hotel- and there are about three choices in town- so I have already visited one of the restaurants multiple times.
....ANYway, so Elmira is also smallish but it to has a castle that is important in the history of slave trade. This however was first run by the Portuguese and then later the Dutch rather than the British. We took a tour there too, which was equally upsetting.
The greatirony of this place is how scenic it is. The beach front here still remains pretty open- the castle is beautiful right on the water and there are palm trees everywhere. It is amazing to me that people literally live right on these beautiful beaches-mostly in hut like shelters- and the realestate is treated pretty much like anything else.
However after walking on the beach I realized that the beaches are more beautiful from afar than near because the beaches are covered in trash. In Ghana it is perfectly acceptable to throw your trash literally anywhere- and the beach is no exception. Everywhere you go there is trash on the road- mostly the left over plastic from the bags of "pure water" that people drink here (no one drinks other water). Also there is human excrement all over the place. So yea- a walk on the beach here means something a little different. However, from the roadside it is totally beautiful.

Anyways we watched the water from afar, and bought a pineapple from a woman with a plate of pineapples on her head- and it cost about 30 cents- including her cutting it up and preparing it for us. The pinapple here is so so so good. That is one thing I am going to miss.

Thats about all we did today.

Other interesting things about Ghana thatI have not yet before mentioned.

- Issue of Marriage- in Ghana, particularly the Volta region where I spent most of my time, there are a lot of people who practice a tradtitional faith- like I have mentioned when talking about the funerals. A lot of the people that I was woking with practice these faiths- and eventually I learned that it is perfectly acceptable and common to have more than one wife- and many of the people I worked with had multiple wifes. Usually each wife has her own house it seems- and keeps her own household. Itwas interesting for me to learn about this especially because I learned about people I was already friends with and repected- which forced me to keep an open mind about it. Any ways-- just an interesting fact for you...

It is alos not uncommon for these religions to practice sacrifices- and a few of the students Imet here even had the experience of attending one in which they sacrificed a bull- which I am not sure if I am happy or sad thatI missed. I have heard that select groups do (sadly) practice child sacrifice still- however I am not sure how true this is, and even it it is it is pretty uncommon and looked down upon. Actually there was a protest against child sacrifice in a neighboring town from my center..

ahhh ok... as usual I have more to say- but my time is out so I will have to do it later!

i;ll write again soon!

1 comment:

  1. These are so interesting! I just started reading them because I recently got back from France, and I am so glad you are on this trip! I can't wait to keep reading...