Blogs from Korle Bu, Accra, Greater Accra, Ghana, Africa

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Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu June 12th 2011

Arrived in Accra at 1am. Security took about an hour to get through. Then I went to arrivals and met the guy who was taking me to the school, a fella called Christian. He didnt speak great English, and was with 3 other people. We got in a car and headed off. Five minutes after we left the airport a bus in front of us went off the road and crashed into a barrier. It was going about 60mph at the time and the driver had almost gone through the windscreen, completely shattering it. Christian looked at me and said "Your first fatality in Ghana!" and started laughing. Brilliant. Then 10 minutes later we drive into a really busy market. It was like something from District 9. Big fires here and there, people banging on the ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu June 8th 2011

Hello, This weekend marked Christa's last weekend in Ghana before she leaves (which incidentally is later today,) so naturally we all met up to say goodbye. The original plan was to meet up in Kumasi on Friday to watch the Congo vs Ghana Africa Cup of Nations qualifier and then go down to Accra for the weekend. So, Louise and I went to buy tickets for the game on Thursday - although when we got there we were told that none were sold in advance (which is typical of Ghana really,) so one could call it a bit of a wasted trip. However, as we arrived the Ghana football team were also arriving at the stadium for a press conference. Chaos ensued. As soon as the gates into the stadium opened everybody in the crowd suddenly ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu May 24th 2011

Hello everyone, sorry it has been so long since my last entry but I haven't been on the internet for a while! First things first, the wedding reception, which I was about to go to last time I was writing. This was a rather interesting affair, although quite similar to an English one in many ways. It was held in a big hall at a University just on the outskirts of Accra and was a buffet meal with a high table and there were some speeches - so far very English. However, the start time was officially 3:30 and we were some of the first there at 5pm, with guests continually arriving throughout the night. The members who sat at the high table didn't actually know they would be sitting at it until they were called ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu May 14th 2011

Hey all, I believe I left off last time saying that we were going to kill the chicken, the goat, my host sister was getting married and I actually have work to do! Thus, I start this entry by saying that all of these things have now happened successfully. I didn't see the chicken being killed, but I did see the fact that the eat more or less every part of the chicken (even the head) and the taste of revenge is sweet. It was a very tasty bit of chicken, and Helen's sister cooked (she is an amazing cook!) it with a really nice spicy tomato-y sauce and Fufu. I have to say, the only slight disappointment is how they eat the meat. Because they eat the whole thing they do just hack the chicken ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu June 19th 2009

Probably just a quick entry today as not feeling 100% and heading home to try and eat some dinner soon! Lots of us volunteers went to a reggae beach party on Labadi beach on Wednesday night which was really cool, lots of cool people (and a few hasslers!) but good music and scenery. But I ate some of a spicy sausage kebab and was so ill yesterday, couldn't stop being sick and spent all day in bed and in the toilet! Luckily it flushed for the whole day, and is still flushing today. Still no shower though, but good news is that I've washed my hair now - twice! Bought my own bucket the other day which was nice and clean and have been scooping the bits out before I tip it on my hair. The ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu May 25th 2009

Well, we're beginning our last week in Ghana. We have definitely enjoyed our time here, and are going to miss many aspects of Accra and Ghana in general. Melinda has been operating more, and more importantly, she learned how to wrap a baby on her back. I've been doing the same thing, going through rounds, and spending some time in the clinic. We also befriended the neighborhood kids and made a HILARIOUS video of the youngest girl (3yrs old) dancing. For our last weekend here we decided to head to a little eco-lodge/beach resort we heard a lot about. So... on Friday after 1 bus trip, 2 tro-tro/mini bus rides, a shouting match between Melinda and the last tro-tro driver after he deserted us in a small village 10km from the lodge, a refund of about ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu May 12th 2009

After our first week in the hospital.. we jumped ship Friday afternoon and took a bus to Cape Coast. The beach itself left something to be desired (areas looked more like a garbage heap than a beach) but we ate great (cheap!) seafood and met some lovely traveling Australians. Tour of the Cape Coast Castle was eye-opening... it was the largest slave-trading center in West Africa. I don't think that a museum has emotionally affected me that strongly since the first time I went through the Holocaust museum. We also visited Kakum National forest (not known for spotting big game like elephants, etc- but full of reptiles and butterflies), where I was able to convince Kevin to walk along the 120ft high canopy walkway. :) He is deathly afraid of heights but pulled it off without ... read more
First days at hospital
First days at hospital
First days at hospital

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu May 7th 2009

Well, we made it! My knees may never be the same after two long cramped flights, but it was nice to arrive in 75 degree weather at 9pm. To bad the next day was humid and in the 90s. We're staying in a nice place called the Dean's Guesthouse that's close to campus. They have a shower, although they don't have hot water, and it mainly just trickles out, so we need to use buckets to bathe. But, at least we have air conditioning in our room, which comes in handy. The majority of our time, however, is spent either outside or in non-air conditioned rooms. This humidity is even impressive for people who spent a time in North Carolina summers. I had some difficulties actually starting work, and it seems the Ghanaian bureaucracy is pretty ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu February 6th 2009

Update from the hospital wards This first week, I've been tagging along with the medical students from the University of Ghana Medical School. They are "junior" medical students and are doing pediatrics for the first time... so most of their patient interaction is geared towards learning how to take a history and perform a physical exam. The faculty here know I'm almost done with school and mainly allow me to do what I want and at times have me help teach basic physical exam skills to the students. My interaction with patients is limited, of course, by language (see below) as many of the patients and parents speak only minimal English and I speak even less Twi. I've been able to distribute some of the toys Dr. Tom (thanks Dad!) provided. The kids are so ... read more
Taking photos of one another
Covert photo of med student rounds
A future doctor

Africa » Ghana » Greater Accra » Accra » Korle Bu February 1st 2009

My Hostel. So, my hostel is about 1.5 miles away from the hospital... which isn't too bad. It's a nice walk each day. My roommate is Emeka. He's from Nigeria originally, but studies medicine in Germany. He's here for a few months doing surgery and ob-gyn rotations. Our hostel hosts medical students, many of which are from surrounding African nations. There is no running water (due to recent shortage)... but we do have satellite TV. Go figure! :) We bathe with buckets that we fill from a main water tank that is filled with water shipped in by trucks. Food. So I've been drinking bottled water and eating food from restaurants... so stomach issues yet! I've been venturing around town by tro-tro (pictured) and found my way to an open air market in a neighborhood ... read more
Hostel Exterior
My Room
My Roommate, Emeka




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