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Published: March 23rd 2009
So this weekend I decided it would be a great idea to wear myself down into the ground. We got back from Mole on Thursday morning and I slept the day away until that afternoon when I went to Champs with some friends to watch the first round of the NCAA basketball tournament. It was exciting because I was able to watch the LSU game but didn’t watch the second set of games because it was getting late here and I was worn out.
The next day I left to go to the Volta region where we were going to do some hiking and go to the Wli water falls. Some of the group left on Thursday but there was no way I could physically do that after Mole so we left Friday afternoon. On the bus there I was sitting next to this older man who was SO SWEET! We talked pretty much the whole ride and he was asking me all about America and we were talking about Ghana and all the differences. We started talking about our families and what not and just about ourselves and then I got the “Why aren’t you married question” which older
Ghanaians seem to love around here. Then he proceeds to tell me more about his son and then I see where this conversation is going. The man is trying to get me to marry his son!!! Then he calls his son and makes me talk to him on the phone and the guy asks me out on a date. A W K W A R D! Other than that the guy was super cool and even helped us get a taxi to the hotel and made sure the guy wasn’t ripping us off. The hotel was pretty remote so it took awhile to get there and we went on some really bumpy roads but the taxi driver was a lot of fun and we had our own little dance party in the cab.
The hotel was absolutely beautiful. We fit 6 people into a bungalow made for 3 which really made the German hotel owner angry, but that’s the fun in backpacking! We hung out for a bit and went to sleep and woke up to an awesome breakfast which included coffee!! Yum, I miss coffee so much. So much that even instant coffee is delicious now, and that’s
saying something! After breakfast we hung out for a bit and decided it was time to get going on the next leg of our adventure.
First we went to Mount Afadjato to hike to the top. Mount Afadjato is the highest mountain in Ghana and those who know me know I’m not exactly the hiking/athletic type of gal. I was expecting some nice switchbacks and some pretty good inclines, but they’ve obviously never heard of the idea of a switchback. The trail just went STRAIGHT up! Each step is like a foot and a half higher than the step before. It was like a stair master on steroids for 2 hours! The group went ahead of me but I was seriously struggling so I fell pretty far behind. Poor Max stayed back with me even though I kept telling him to go with the group. I kept walking 10 steps and stopping. It officially became the Loren pace. So Max drug me to the top of this mountain and I finally made it. I was really glad I finally got up there and all the struggling made it worth it. As difficult as it was to get up there,
I would definitely do it again. Getting up there was such a sense of accomplishment and the scenery was incredible.
Next we went to Wli Falls and the boys hiked up to the upper falls but I knew after what happened the morning there was no way I could make it so we went to the lower falls. I’ve seen pictures of it and it seemed beautiful but you just cant get a proper idea of how freaking huge these waterfalls are in less you are there in person. It was so absolutely beautiful and breathtaking. We were able to swim and take a ton of pictures. We made some friends and talked with a lot of people. One of our new friends told us around 4:30 that it was getting late and that it would be smart for us to get hiking back. As we were leaving Emily started showing off her drumming skills that she’s learned in one of her classes and even started showing off some of the dances she’s learned in her dance class. She was really good and watching an obruni dancing and drumming was absolutely hilarious.
We had to go to a
different hotel that night because the other place was full. It wasn’t as pretty but the food was great. I ordered spring rolls as an appetizer and that should have been just my meal. They were huge!! And so good! And then I got some yummy groundnut soup with omo tua (rice balls) and it was the best I’ve had yet. That’s definitely my favorite dish here.
The next day we headed to Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary on the way out of town. We got to the junction of the main road and the sanctuary was another 5 km. We could have taken a taxi for about a cedi a person, or we could each take one of the motorbikes for a cedi a person. Motorbikes are so much more fun so we took those instead. When I go to Togo in a couple weeks they don’t have taxis, they only have motorbikes so it was great practice. Public transportation in Africa is so entertaining!
So we got to the sanctuary and it was definitely one of the coolest things I have done so far. Our guide’s name was Saul and he would walk with us through the
forest making some sort of monkey noise that was very similar to kissing noises and then we heard trees rustling and monkeys coming towards us!! There’s a whole family in the trees. Itty bitty baby monkeys attached to their mommas and the teenager monkeys and the big mom and dad monkeys. So cute! Then the cool part happened. Saul gave me a banana and told me how to hold it up properly and then guess what? THE MONKEY ATE A BANANA OUT OF MY HAND!! It just climbed out of the tree and reached down and peeled it and ate straight out of my hand. I was inches away from a real live monkey. So incredibly cool!!
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