GHANA ON THE ROAD AND GHANA IN DECEMBER


Today, some tro-tro mate made my day. I was coming from Accra and made a transit at Shiashi. So, man had to continue the journey. I stood on the side of the road waiting for a ride to Legon and I was joined by a white couple. Before long, here pulled up a nice tro-tro with the mate shouting their usual calls of where they were going. Oh!! ‘Nice’ by the average Ghanaian tro-tro standard, if you get what I mean. I caught this mate’s face and I saw that it flushed from embarrassment that only today, his tro-tro was not new enough.

So we all got on board. The white couple first and me, with my backpack, following along. And we sat in the same seat. I was trying to mind my own business when I heard this mate go like, “Yesss!!!” So I asked him, “Massa, ɛyɛ sɛn?”  With glee, he answered, “20pesewas.” So I was reaching into my pocket to find him some change when the white bloke stretches his hands over and gives the mate 20 pesewas, and quickly adds, “for two.” People, 2 X 20 = 40 or??? The mate didn’t say aaanything!!! I quickly paid him and went on to minding my own business, waiting for him to tell this dude that (as usual as Ghanaian) the money will not reach!! A few seconds passed. A few more seconds. A minute.  Still, silence.

So I decide to steal a glance at this mate and here he is, with his face out the window, smiling sheepishly to himself. If I had laughed on that bus, I tell you, they would have stopped at the next bus stop and given me my change, thank you!! Here was our man, caught in the difficulty of telling our white friend that the money was supposed to be twice that. And he couldn’t!!  He lost 20 good pesewas when they alighted and I think I heard him silently cursing to himself. Next time!!!

I like the feeling that December brings here in Ghana. There is this light breeze that blows any time of day with a certain candid dryness. Time for dips in the pool and sitting on lovers’ benches with a good book or just to reflect on your year going by. And the same time of year that fresh maize is on the cob and being boiled all over the roadsides. You can eat tonnes just standing at a spot.

So this guy was riding his bike around town with corn-on-the-cob half eaten and he was not being too careful with his bike. He rode past me and I didn’t really have a lot of reason to keep looking at him until just a few meters away, I heard a loud crash. The guy had fallen. When I turned, here was a responsible-looking young man sitting on top of his bicycle, with one hand supporting himself off the ground and the other one (you guessed right) balancing his corn over his head. The things we do for love!!!

If you are planning a vacation to Africa, wherever you are, please come to Ghana first and see Africa first-hand. This is the only country in the world where every sorry is answered with “Oh!! It’s nothing!!” Especially if you just stepped on someone’s toes.

So if you are missing toes to step on, start here, eh?!! There are many free toes roaming the way-sides. And enjoy the lively people. Enjoy the talk. Enjoy the food. Enjoy the rides into town. Hang out, have fun. Who knows, you could catch first-hand another unforgettable original Ghana moment. Only, right down here in Ghana!!

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