Saturday, April 19, 2014

Sure is hot out last day....sniff,cry/jump for joy

Well here we are…last day in Ghana. But first, let’s look at the last few days...

Wednesday: I ended up going to the pool with Erica, Katie and Beth. The pool was at Unique palace, which is around the corner from my hostel. The place was nothing special but it was a big thing of water that we could submerge ourselves in! We hung out, chatted and played cards until the sun started going down. We then all went home to get ready for salsa night. I usually tried dressing pretty low key when we went out because I don’t need the extra attention but this night I just though, “oh well, I’m going to get attention either way!”. So I threw on my African skirt and a crop top showing a little midriff. I grabbed a taxi to Afrikiko and met up with the gang. During the night, more and more familiar faces joined us. The dancing spirit was not too high in the group though. That didn’t stop me from hitting up the dance floor and being twirled around a bit. I just get so sweaty so quickly from the combination of the heat and the dancing. A large portion of the group went home and I was left with Aaron chatting until Tolu came around midnight. Aaron went home and Tolu and I closed the bar around 3 just chatting. He gave me a ride home afterwards and I was in bed by 3:30. My roommate was leaving at 4 but I was so out I didn’t even notice her leave!

Thursday: I went to the hospital in the morning to get my paperwork done. I’m lucky I didn’t push it to Friday since I realized on my way that Friday was a holiday. I went to administration to get the stamp. They went through their records and said they didn’t have me in them! I told them I signed in at the OBGYN office. After some calls and waiting around for 2 hours….I finally had my stamp. I headed to the OB wards to meet up with Erica and see if a doctor there would give me a signature. I found one of the doctors I had worked with on the labor ward. As we walked on to the labor ward, a dead body was being carried past us. I got a weird chill. The thought that had that woman not been in these circumstances, she might still be breathing is a weird feeling. Erica and I headed back to her hostel to get the others and leave for Osu. We were all really hungry and headed to NutriLab Smoothies. They have really delicious smoothies (something like 40 flavors to choose from) and yummy salads. An actual salad! It was so good. We did a bit of fabric shopping afterwards. Well, they did. My suitcase is full. We got some frozen yogurt for dinner. Aaron met up with us and took us home. We then got ready and grabbed a cab to +233. It’s a live music venue and bar and grill. Katie, Erica and I went. The taxis we were flagging down were giving us outrageous Obruni prices like 20 Cedis. We eventually found a cab driver that would take us for 8 Cedis but didn’t know where the place was. Thank god for Google maps. Along the way he took a detour to go around the round about which I am pretty sure judging from the Google map, did nothing for us to save time. He was getting really annoying saying the ride would cost more and we said no. Once we got to the place, he asked where our husbands were (we said they were on their way) and he asked if he should join us for protection… thanks, but no thanks… we’re good. The music being played was Highlife, so African. The band was really good and there were some great voices. We ordered drinks and a pizza. I have been drinking Alvaro nonstop. It’s a malt drink with fruit flavor. Aaron joined up with us again and after chilling there a bit, he took us home.

Friday: Since it was a holiday, most of us didn’t go to the hospital. I walked over to the Osda house to the others because I wanted to take them to the Kaneshie market. Katie, Greg, Erica and I grabbed a taxi to the market. Outside was bustling as always with all the vendors selling their copious amounts of fish and other produce. I even took a picture of the others with one of the butchers there…there was a cut up goat spread across the table. The hoofs and face were the worst things to look at. Sadly the actual market inside the building was closed due to the holiday. We grabbed a taxi to the Mövenpick hotel. This place was heaven on earth! The lobby was done so nicely and was so cold! We went to the pool area and were met by the pool guy. The entrance on a normal day costs 40 Cedis and includes two towels to use and a drink. Since it was a holiday it cost 60 Cedis (about $24). We all hesitated at the 60. We had thought it might even be 100 but 60 wasn’t little either. The place looked SO good though; big pool, comfy lounge chairs, sun, waiters, palm trees. The pool guy noticed our hesitation and said he could let us in for 50 each. SOLD! We felt so luxurious. The towels even got me excited…yes…it’s that bad. We spent the next few hours lounging, swimming, eating and drinking and loving life. I may have gotten a bit burned. It was really hot and lets not forget I am just a bit above the equator and we were in the noon sun. I had to go jump in the pool about every 10 minutes to cool off and would be dry after being out of the pool for 2 minutes. We had such a good time and it was totally worth the money. 

Around 4:30pm, we headed back to the Osda House to get ready for the night. I exchanged pictures with Katie and put on my African strapless dress. We all got into a cab and left for Osu. We originally wanted to go eat fish (and I would eat couscous and fried plantains) but it started drizzling outside and we did not want to risk sitting in the pouring rain outside. Our backup plan was the Indian restaurant we had gone two about 2 weeks ago. The food was delicious once again. We shared a bunch of dishes, which offered a lot of variety for us. After the restaurant, we headed to the Paloma hotel for Karaoke. We got there around 8:30 but it wasn’t starting until 10. Some friends of ours started to show up so we spent the time chatting and seeing who would actually sing. I was all up for it because I love karaoke. Doe said he would sing with me. After a few performances, Doe and I went and rocked “I will survive” together. It was a good crowd that would actually sing along. I later sang “Umbrella” as well. While I was walking off the stage, I got pulled back up again to sing a song with one for the local guys. It was a great time. After karaoke, they went into a really long streak of Ghanaian and Nigerian music. Granted it is very lovely, I can only dance to so much of it. At some point, I gave the DJ three more songs and if by the third it wasn’t American, I was going to go to bed. Lucky for me, the third song started an about 20 minute period of all the songs I knew and loved. After that little period, a group of us left. I easily could have gone to bed but the others wanted to go check out a different club. I wasn’t about to be the party pooper. We got to the club and could already hear from the outside that it was only playing Ghanaian music. Luckily Tolu’s friend didn’t feel like going in either. No one was really motivated or just indifferent as to what to do next. We eventually agreed we would all just go home to bed. 

I hate having to say good-bye. I kept my good-byes short and sweet. I met some really friendly, kind, funny, energetic people here that I will miss. Thanks to today’s technology I can keep in touch!

Today I am finishing up packing, showering and cleaning and will head to the airport around 4. My flight isn’t until 8:35pm but I still have to check in and try to get exit row seats again!
It has been a really great experience in Ghana. I’ll reflect a bit and then post one more post about the experience when I am in Germany. That way I also have Internet and can post lots of pictures! See you on the other side!

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