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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

One Week of Class?


Five months doesn’t seem like very long in terms of a lifetime.  It’s not.  In retrospect, blink and it’s gone.  As I sit in my room on the day before Easter pondering my time here, I look down at my tan (that seems pathetic in comparison to the Ghanaians I’m surrounded by).  I’ve realized that when we go certain places here that are more heavily populated by white people, we’ll comment on it.  “There are a lot of white people here….”  “Yeah, that’s weird.”  Then we try to figure out why they’re here, especially those that have families with children.  “Hey kids! We’re going to Africa for spring break this year!” 

Back to before I noticed that I’m still a Caucasian... My tan is symbolic.  I earned it.  I hope it sticks around a while.  I’ve grown accustomed to it.  That’s all I’ve got to say about that.

Aimee Mann singing in the background, it’s a peaceful, reflective day in room 154.  I think it’s safe to say that the atmosphere will change when we attend a Fabolous concert tonight.  Here’s our day plan:

1.     -Get my life together.
2.     -Walk outside and immediately start to sweat.
3.     -Negotiate a taxi to the mall (which will cost approximately 3 GHc (Ghana Cedi)
4.     -Go to the mall to get tickets for the concert.
5.     -Enjoy a little of what looks like an American place with A/C.
6.     -Go to a grocery store to get marshmallows and Ghana’s version of rice krispies.  (Claire and I are making our roommates rice krispie bars- they’ve never heard of marshmallows.  We weren’t even sure we could get them here, but we can!)
7.     That’s as far as I’ve thought ahead…..

We went to Till’s beach yesterday.  Walking along the beach I came to a few more realizations.  The beach looks like something you sometimes see pictures of and think, “That’s so beautiful, maybe someday I’ll get to a beach that looks like that.”  But then you never actually get there.  But here I am.  Funny enough that someone trying to get me to go to the beach with him sent me a text message describing the scene I would see if I went with him.  “next week we can plan going to tills or bojo beach it’s a nice beach like pirate of the carribien look”  And I quote.  Despite the horrible English and stupid reference…it really does look like a scene straight from a movie.  (Also, needless to say I didn’t go to the beach with previously said stupid man.) Pinching myself and asking the most commonly asked question of this journey, “Is this my life right now?” I walked the beach in amazement.


Fast-forward the concert.  50 GHc later, we arrived at the conference center promising a look at Fabolous.  It rained earlier in the afternoon, so it was cool out.  You would think that since we have been here a while that we would know by now not to assume that things would start on time.  Set to start at 7 pm, we left the embassy at 7.  We didn’t hear any artists until about 10:30.  They had a good lineup of local artists to perform, and nothing against Fabolous, but I enjoyed the local artists more.  When Ghanaians surrounding us see us singing along and dancing to their music, they get a kick out of it.  Fabolous came onstage at about midnight.

We were pretty casually dressed in going to this concert.  I had jeans and a tanktop on (under my sweatshirt) and looked like I could be going to the grocery store instead of a concert.  The locals were dressed quite fancily.  Heels, short dresses and skirts, dress shirts, and of course some really strange outfits.  One guy had a sweater we deemed as something we’d wear to an ‘ugly sweater party’.  Leopard print leggings, paisley shirts, and sunglasses were other unsurprisingly common sights.  So many funny things.  There were a lot of younger teenagers there, too.  They started standing on each other shoulders and on a wooden divider in order to see better.  We were sort of annoyed because they were in front of us.  Until they broke the divider.  Whoops.  Problem solved.

After about 6 of Fabolous’ songs, we decided to leave and go out.  I don’t think I’ve ever laughed that much on a night out.  We went to one of our usual spots, saw a lot of the same people, but for some reason there were some new, odd really drunk people out.  After being grabbed right after walking through the door and being told, “I have to buy you a drink.” I politely accepted and continued on to being with my friends.  An older Indian man came up with his camera and started grabbing us to take pictures with him.  Not the most coordinated dancer in general even without the alcohol, you can imagine what he looked like a little intoxicated.  Then he handed us his camera and we took full advantage of his drunkenness and took loads of stupid pictures of each other.  I can guarantee this man is having a great Easter morning recapping what his night consisted of through those pictures.  “Who are those white people?!”  Then there was another man who was really drunk who wanted to dance with me.  After pushing him away a few times, he started giving me attitude.  He turned around and sassily said, “Bye bye,” to me.  Really, really funny.  His friend approached me and told me that his buddy wanted to dance with me and should he, “tell him to go away?”  Yes, please tell him to go away.  His friend returned and informed me that his friend, “wouldn’t go away.”  He kept ‘cheers’-ing us by touching his glass to ours.  After breaking a glass on one of ours and then trying to continue drinking out of it, we struggled to prevent him from coming close to our glasses.  He would ‘cheers’ us when we weren’t looking and then run away.

I can’t paint an accurate picture of that night unless you were there, but that’s my attempt.

P.S. Don’t worry mom, I’m keeping those two-legged sharks at bay.

Speaking of mom…I miss you!  It’s weird to spend a holiday away from home and family.  It’s definitely a lonely feeling.  But I’ve been informed that my Easter basket will be waiting for me when I get home. 

I haven’t made my title point yet.  I only have one week of class before finals begin.  Where did the semester go?  It will be hard to leave here.  There are so many things that I’ll miss.  I’m not excited to have to readjust to being home, but I will have to do it soon enough.  Though, I am excited to go home at the same time.  Strange adjustments.

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