Archive for the 'Ghana' Category

Friday Night

Saturday, February 17th, 2007

Another hot Friday night. You can feel the youthful energy – the music is loud late into the night, voices of roudy revelers fill the small concrete plaza which my room faces. Those who know me best will be able to answer this question correctly:

Q. What am I doing tonight? (Choose the best possible answer).
1. scouring the clubs for the hottest girl, and trying to get her to spend the night in my 8′x7′ “bachelor pad”
2. programming something on the computer
3. relaxing the night away with some new friends over some beers
4. hitting the streets to find some crack


And the correct answer, the most likely answer, is choice 2. It seems the activity I enjoy most is developing my relationship with Silver (my Powerbook). It also is a frustration alleviation mechanism, so if I get really worked up, that’s all I want to do.

Valentine’s Day in Ghana

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

I just found out that day for lovers in Ghana is only 7 or 8 years old. There were lots of people wearing red, pink, or reddish orange, but only a few really seemed to use their outfits to showcase the holiday. I shared with a friend that Valentine’s Day was never really a big day for me because I never seemed to have a girlfriend on that date, and I wasn’t about to go find one just for the occasion. Of course there’s the stories about St. Valentine, but didn’t it become a holiday in America around 1950, as a result of greeting card companies’ efforts? Or is that just a rumor?

Ownership of Personal Property in Ghana, 101

Monday, February 12th, 2007

Personal property and ownership in Ghana have very
different meanings than they do in the West. A western person can easily understand Ghanaian “ownership” with these three easy steps:

1. I see it.
2. Now it’s mine too.
3. You must share.

This is applicable to anything Westerners might consider personal property. For example, if you are eating something, it would be rude in Ghana if you don’t offer your friends to “join” you, meaning, to eat your food along with you until it’s finished. This obviously causes the food on the plate to disappear faster than it would have if you were eating it by yourself. The rule commonly causes mouth-stuffing races as people struggle to fill up. If you made the mistake of buying just enough food for yourself, you’ll be going hungry tonight, or you’ll be making another trip to the food stand.

Second Home

Friday, February 9th, 2007

When you think of traveling through Africa, and trying to communicate with your family, what comes to mind? Maybe some dingy internet cafĂ© – a hole-in-the-wall that has 5 computers smooshed together, all sharing a single modem line, with everybody except you downloading MP3s?

I thought I was being slightly ridiculous by taking my laptop all over Africa with me, but I found my second home here in Accra, called Busy Internet. This place is absolutely amazing, from an American standpoint. They’ve got around 120 terminals split between two rooms, a large space for their 4 X-Boxes, and even a room where you can bring in your laptop, sit at a desk, and plug directly into their internet connection. And regarding their internet connection, they’ve got redundant connections to lessen the down time, a fiber-optic cable to London, and another to the national phone company. Holy crap!

Needless to say, if I need to get anything computer-wise done, I can do it there.