Trip Start Feb 21, 2010
21Trip End Apr 18, 2010
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My feet are my most important assets here in Ghana. Each day they get me out of bed, take me on my run and get me to and from the office. Unlike the locals, my feet don't have much experience on the pavement without footwear so I rely heavily on my black Sanuk sandals to get me around. Sanuk sandals are amazing, they're made out of a yoga mat so they're comfortable, soft and durable. Each day we walk at least two hours so it's important to have proper footwear. Although I brought two pairs of sandals with me from home, my second pair are army green and I can't bring myself to wear them with my pink skirt
The Skinny One
My parents have always said that honesty is the best policy but in reality, sometimes the truth hurts. The Ghanaian people are known for their honesty. If you're fat they call you fat, if have a zit, they'll point it out to you and if you have a big nose, they'll make sure to remind you of it's enormity. Last weekend we called our friend Sam to take us to the beach. While Sam and I were waiting for Maria outside the house he looked me up and down and informed me that most white woman that visit Ghana are skinny but that I'm not, I'm curvy and have an African butt. When I didn't respond he assured me that this was a good thing, so I reluctantly thanked him. Two days later Maria, Jane and I flagged down a taxi and when it stopped we realized that there were already four people in it. The taxi driver didn't seem to mind and instructed the skinny one to get in the front and the two big ones to get in the back. Us girls looked at each other and had to decide who was who! In the end, Maria and I jumped into the back and Jane got into the front. After the taxi driver took off, I told him that he would be getting half his fare for ruining Maria and I's self esteem and we all had a laugh.I paid him the full fare in the end.
All of the travel books about Ghana state that there is a high chance that if you're a white female traveler you will receive hundreds of marriage proposals. Before I left, I got an old ring that Nick had given me sized and was determined to wear it. Well, I hate to admit it but two weeks into my trip, I ditched the ring. Not because I wanted to be perceived as a free woman, but because it is so hot here and my finger would swell up and then I couldn't get the damn thing off! The sad truth is that even without a wedding ring, other than the orange ladies son, I haven't been proposed to. What's wrong with me? Is it my African sized ass, I thought that was a good thing? The good news is that I have been flashed and been asked to flash. The majority of Ghanaians might not have running water or electricity, but they all have cell phones. Cell phones are quite affordable, I bought mine for $30 when I arrived and can call home for under 7 cents a minute. When someone asks you to flash them, it means that they want you to call them but only for a second so that your phone number appears on their phone, then they can store it and call or text you. Last week Dani and I were having lunch at the Castle restaurant and after waiting two hours for our meal, our waiter Emanuel told us that if we were strapped for time, we could call him in advance and he would place our order so that when we arrived we wouldn't have to wait so long. He told me to flash him which I thought was a brilliant plan, no more rice and beans for lunch! Since that day, my waiter buddy Emanuel has called me at least five times everyday. The first few times I answered and turned down his offers to go to the beach, now I just don't answer. I guess there's a fine line between getting a good meal in under two hours and getting courted by your waiter. No more flashing for this girl