Tuesday, 7 November 2017


 5. Don’t think you can dance until you’ve been to a Ghanaian wedding; One thing you quickly learn when living in Ghana is that Ghana does it better. Which certainly means weddings are no exception, from the spectacular dance moves, to the famous and quite frankly traditional song of ‘one corner’, it soon becomes apparent that the ‘worm’ and ‘water sprinkler’ just won’t cut it when faced with the ‘azonto’. The most outstanding thing however about Ghanaian dancing, is the ability to be dancing to an almost non-existent beat, where each person on the dance floor is doing their own routine, running wild with imaginary moves of their own, it puts a whole new meaning to ‘cutting shapes’.  My favourite thing however, was the spirit and energy that flooded the dance floor, watching my peers attempt to learn these vigorous gyrating leg movements has to go down as one of my favourite moments so far. 

   4. A simpler life is simply blissful; It’s only when coming from a country so absorbed in technology and an on-the-go lifestyle, that you discover human interaction again when you find yourself in Ghana. No longer distracted with errands, technology or TV, Ghana has re-ignited my passion for reading and writing. Or simply the art of conversation for hours with a friend, or my personal favourite; hoola hooping with my host families kids. Some of my favourite moments here have been playing cards with other volunteers, or colouring with the family.
        3. Don’t trust the oranges- never judge a food buy its cover; where everything in Ghana is desperate compared to the UK, a familiar object or sight is blessed, even if this comes in the form of an orange.  As a UK volunteer, the food was something we were prepared and briefed on before we started our placement; however one vital lesson I have learnt is that looks are deceiving. Some of the best food I have had out here has certainly not looked as appealing as one is used to, nevertheless it has been utterly delicious, some of my personal favourites has to be “fufu” and rice balls. Yet, some of the less pleasurable encounters have surprisingly been with familiar friends such as oranges, which I can only describe as playing a dangerous game of Russian roulette. The food here certainly encompasses my overall motto for Ghana, which is to expect the unexpected. Yet, with somewhat irony, it is this precise motto, and my mistrust in oranges, why I am falling completely in love with the wonderful country that is Ghana.  

     2. Pavements aren’t pavements; speaking of expecting the unexpected, the Ghanaian traffic and transport system is a great prime example. There is no greater adrenaline rush than crossing a road in tamale after surviving the onslaught of yellow yellows, line taxi’s and motorbikes, just to reach the deceiving safety of a pavement. Once on a pavement, one must be in constant aware of people, bikes and motorbikes, and quite frankly if a line taxi could fit on them I have a feeling they’d be using them too. Being on constant alert whilst walking around is essential...some eyes in the back of your head would be useful too.
         1. Be grateful; the hardest part of my experience in Ghana was only picking five lessons. I have truly learnt more here in five weeks than I ever have, about culture, people and what really matters in life. One of the best things about people in Ghana is their appetite for knowledge, and their generosity in giving it. From language lessons in my line taxi’s to work each morning, cooking lessons with my host mother or dance lessons from strangers at a wedding, it is such a gift to be surrounded in a culture full of new things to learn and embrace. Working and living in a country so different from your own is certainly simultaneously daunting and down-right incredible. Yet, it is not the country of Ghana that I have learnt most from, but the people that live within it. The spirit that runs through this country is electric and contagious, a country where no-one is strangers, and no-one is too busy with life to take a moment to appreciate it. I have not just learnt the simple greetings from the Ghanaians’, but quite the contrary, a life lesson; happiness. 

 Written By
Chloe Rose-Brown

No comments:

Post a Comment