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July 3rd 2011
Published: July 3rd 2011
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Bert and I have spent the last few days being driven around by our now full-time tour guide, Tess, in her Nissan Patrol! We've had some hairy experiences on dirt tracks where the 4x4 has come in mighty handy when an ordinary car would have been swallowed up by the craters of pot holes they have here! Because it's rainy season, the roads are much worse than they normally would be.
Since Thursday, we've been to Fanta's Folly Beach Resort, Green Turtle Beach Resort, Dixcove, Fort Metal Cross and Ankobra Beach Resort, "Where Africa Meets the World". The beach resorts aren't quite like the beach resorts we'd be used to in France or Spain, they're a lot more unique and...African I guess! They're all obviously on the beach and have gorgeous views of the ocean and nearby villages. The accommodation ranges from bungalows to straw huts to clay huts, with Green Turtle priding itself on being an Eco resort. In material terms, Ankobra has probably been my favourite so far as the waves were great and Klauss, the manager, is a keen surfer. The only downside to Ankobra was that we got scalded. As in we are lobster red. We thought we'd be ok without sun cream because there appeared to be very little sun yesterday (probably the darkest since we got here but still really warm) and boy were we wrong! We definitely learned our lesson the hard way; you cannot outsmart nature!
So, on Friday when we were at Green Turtle, we went for a bit of a wander, as you do. We walked the length of the beach and stumbled upon a village built right on the beach which seemed a little dangerous but hey, we obviously don't know what we're talking about since we managed to turn ourselves into sun ripened tomatoes! Ably led by Peter, our four person expedition took us through narrow passages between tiny homes and tens of people all looking slightly bewildered at these four "Abroni" wandering through their home. (Here in Ghana, white people are known as "Abroni". Generally, Abroni are associated with money and so you will often find young children in particular putting out their hands and asking for "1 Cedi please". For the last few days when we've been driving through different villages and towns, the kids have shouted "Abroni! Abroni!" and waved at us with huge smiles. Some have never seen white skin before and for those who have, it's been limited.) Personally, I was feeling both nervous and excited. After initially thinking that most of the natives looked as though they were going to kill us, I quickly cottoned onto the idea that if you greet each person with a hello or a good-afternoon, their stoney faces become warm and smiling. We were welcomed on the beach by more than a dozen small kids, each vying for our attention and desperately seeking to have their photograph taken. Beibhinn was a massive hit and was swamped by would be models! The village is built on a sort of outlet so on the other side there were huge fishing boats painted in bright colours bearing the flags of the world. While Peter tried to convince the children to make some great photo opportunities and Bert was being bombarded by children almost the same height as her, Tess and I were being inundated with requests to be "my friend, my friend!". Just as we would find it difficult to put an age on some Africans, they too can find it hard to tell what age we were. One girl asked us what age we were and when we replied she laughed and ran off to tell her friends! At this stage a mob had gathered to clutch at our hands and stroke our skin to see what white felt like. Some kids tried to rub off the white paint to reveal our real colour! We were led back through the village and out the other side by the hand and waved ff on our merry way. GREAT DAY TO BE ALIVE!


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