Friday, July 30, 2010

Rogue Miners?!?!

On Monday I heard a story about Chinese miners mining illegally in the Western Region. I later read the full details in The Daily Graphic. Essentially some Chinese citizens have descended upon Ghana equipped with various mining tools and are extracting precious minerals. I am both shocked and incensed. Apparently this has been going on for more than a year and nothing has been done to stop it. This mining activity has heavily polluted the River Ankobra which is used for drinking water by people in that area. I am at a loss for words. There is a Mining Act in Ghana (the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703)) and so far as reported everything these miners have done is in violation of that Act and yet nothing has been done to stop them. How can the government stand by and allow this to occur? And as for the miners, I'm astounded by their gall and audacity. Can you imagine setting up shop in a foreign country and just pillaging their resources? Why did they think they could do that and why are we allowing them to get away with it?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Don’t mind me, I’m just digging

Every morning my lovely neighbor drops me at Danquah circle. From there I take a tro tro to Nima police station. This ride takes no more than ten minutes and costs me 20 pesewas, which is about 14 cents. Trotros are operated by a trotro driver and a trotro mate. The tro tro mate is responsible for collecting the tro tro fare from the passengers, opening and closing the door of the trotro and yelling out the tro tro stops. Today I boarded the trotro and took the only available seat, the one directly next to the tro tro mate. From that seat I had the pleasure of watching the trotro mate pick his nose from Danquah Circle to Nima police station which is the about two miles. I kid you not. The man picked, he dug, he extracted objects, examined them, flicked them and then dug again. I winced each time he flicked something and prayed it wouldn't land on me. He stopped only to open the trotro door, allow passengers to sit and exit and collect fares. It was as if he was performing nasal surgery on himself. I really hope he finds whatever he was digging for.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Secret Lovers?

I never carried handkerchiefs while living in the US. I mean never. I didn't have much use for them. I rarely found myself sweating like Patrick Ewing at the free throw line in the fourth quarter of a Knicks game. Too bad I find that occurring far too frequently in Ghana. As a result a handkerchief is now a staple in my purse, along with a bottle of water, some Odomos (mosquito repellent cream), handwipes and antibacterial gel. Oh how the contents of my speedy have changed.

Despite the fact that I constantly buy handkerchiefs I don’t have a constant supply of handkerchiefs. Why? Because they disappear. I leave the house with one and come back without it. Or I will do the wash and place seven in the wash and but later find only two. I want to know where do my handkerchiefs go!?!? They mysteriously disappear much like my socks did in the US. You know how it is, you do a load of laundry and upon completion realize that some of your socks are no longer in pairs. Well my handkerchiefs are vanishing much like my socks. Are hankies and socks getting it on together in some far off, distant world made of cotton? Are they procreating sockerchiefs? Seriously, what is happening to all of my handkerchiefs?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Bamboozled, hoodwinked, led astray, run amuck!

I just realized I never gave the background story on how I became a tro tro rider. Nor have I even described a tro tro. Tro tro is Ghana's public transportation. Basically a tro tro is a vehicle with multiple seats used as public transportation. The cost of a tro tro ride depends on your destination.

I didn't move to Ghana knowing that I was going to be a daily tro tro rider. In fact I purchased a car for my stay in Ghana to avoid that. I bought the car through a person who shall remain nameless. I provided said person with the money for the purchase and shipping of the car in December of 2009 and was told the car would be in Ghana by the end of February, just in time for my return to Ghana.

Well, I returned to Ghana in February of 2010 but my car didn't actually arrive at my home until July 14, 2010. There is so much I can say about all that occurred between February and July but that would lead to the creation of a whole new blog. During the time between February and July I often took tro tro to cut down on taxi fares.

I've titled this post "bamboozled, hoodwinked, led astray, run amuck!" because the car I finally received does not match the car I was sent a picture. But you know what?? It is finally here and for that I am grateful. Additionally, this car, though not what I expected, appears to be decent so I will be RIDING! Well once I get over my fear of driving in Ghana. LOL

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Today is Tuesday!!!!!

Tuesday is not normally very exciting. It isn't Friday, the day that signals the end of the work week, the start of the weekend and two days off of work for most; it isn't Wednesday, Hump day as some call it and the day that signals the halfway point of the work week; but Tuesday is a very celebrated day in my life. Why? Because there is a little restaurant near my office that sells some delicious red red and fried plantain and that meal is sold on, you guessed it, Tuesdays! I discovered this red red and plantain sometime in March and it has become my weekly Tuesday lunch. It may also be the cause of my ever increasing waist line. I'm not going to let that little fact, well maybe not so little, more like chubby fact, separate me from my favorite meal. I'm off to enjoy . . . . . . . .

and maybe I will take a long walk tonight.