ErinCraig's Travel Journals

ErinCraig

  • 33 years old
  • From Idaho, United States
  • Currently in Idaho, United States

Erin's adventures in Ghana

Many people have asked how they call follow my experience in Ghana. I'm hoping this blog will be a good way for everyone to read about my journey.

Fabric and FuFu

Ghana Cape Coast, Ghana  |  Oct 07, 2012
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Yesterday was a fun day at school...well I guess we weren't technically at school. Geoff and I received our budget for the project money for Aboom. We decided to spend our money on materials for the children to make more bags to sell to raise money for the school. We bought 60 yards of fabric. We had to get 2 yards per pattern so we had a lot of fun picking the different patterns out. We bought all the fabric from the mother of one of the students so it made it that much more meaningful. She even left Geoff and I pick out 2 yards of our own pattern to have something made for ourselves. It was definitely very thoughtful of her! We bought some other miscellaneous items that were on the list. We treated ourselves to a delicious lunch and that was how our day was spent.  I finally picked up my pants, skirt and bag that I had made. I'm just waiting on my fitted dress now :) I really like everything that she made :) I'm guessing I will have to get more items before I leave. I've never seen the fabric that they have here, in America. I found out some interesting news yesterday. Apparently David, the project coordinator at Sankofa, has left Ghana for 2 months. He didn't tell anyone he was going. The other volunteers that were planning on spending 2 months at the school and orphanage now have to move to a new site because he left. Everyone is pretty upset with him. It doesn't really affect me, besides the fact that he told me that he was going to pay me back for the project money that he had to borrow and use on something other than the books he was supposed to purchase for the children. He told me over and over again that he would be paying the money back and getting the materials for the children and that I could go visit him to make sure he did it. Looks like thats not going to happen. It just makes me sad more than anything. Sad for the children. There are so many people that want to help them and he is creating barriers and making it next to impossible for anyone to do it. SO frustrating! I'm definitely going to make one last trip out there before I leave. I have a few more supplies that I want to drop off. Also, I might have some extra dresses to take to the girls. Last night I met up with the other volunteers from Sankofa. They will be moving to a new site starting tomorrow so I'm happy I got to spend the night with them. I think they are moving to Alex's orphanage so that will be really cool. I know they will enjoy their time there. Patrick had a performance so I went with him to watch. It was the funeral for one of the member's uncles. Apparently his uncle was living in the US when he passed away and they brought his body back to Cape Coast. We were there when the casket arrived. It was very emotional. Patrick told me stories about the man and how he always supported his family. He built a beautiful complex for his entire family. That is where the funeral was at. Oh, one other cool thing that happened last night and one more example of how kind Ghanian people are. It was taking forever to get a car into town. I saw a boy, he was probably 16 or 17, waiting for a car too. I asked him if I could go with him. I told him where I was going and he told the driver once we got one. They kept talking back and forth in fante so I wasn't sure what they were saying. Apparently the car wasn't going where I needed to go, so the boy paid for my fare and then had me get out with him. He walked me to another car so I could get to where I needed to go. So sweet. I tried to pay him but he wouldnt take my money. There was a guy in the next car I got into. We started talking, he asked about my volunteering and what organization I was with. Apparently he worked for ProWorld over the summer so we laughed about that. Small little world :) He also paid for my fare. There are so many great people in this country. Even though some times the cars are packed full of people, they are usually all sweaty and there is no such thing as personal space, I really love talking to all the random people throughout the day. Everyone always greets when they get into the car. I like it and I will definitely miss it. It will be crazy taking a taxi when I get back. Not to mention how insanely cheap it is here. It's only 1 cedi to get into town...so 50 cents in America. Pretty sure that wouldn't get you anywhere. I had a very early and busy morning today. My sister wanted to teach me how to make Fufu. I'm still not positive what we put in it, but whatever it was, I helped wash. I don't think it was a vegetable but I could be wrong :) We then cooked it in the coal pot. Once it was done cooking, we had to pound it to get the nuts out. I did it for a minute but then let the professional take over :) I got a few pics. My sister was definitely laughing at me. I watched my mom finish the process, which included straining the soup. I'm still not sure when we are going to eat it....either tonight for dinner or tomorrow after church. I met one of my sister's family friends today. His name is Nana. He is a teacher and a personal trainer. He has decided that he is going to be my new fante teacher. He said the next time that he comes over, he will only speak fante to me. I am in big trouble :) I love learning the language tho. I just sound silly when I speak it. By the time I go back to America, I will know my fante :) I don't practice it enough because Patrick speaks english, along with every one else that I talk to. I'm helping Patrick with his english and he is attempting to help me with my fante. I try to say certain things to him and he just laughs because he has no idea what I'm saying. He always says "Fante is just a really hard language". I think that's his way of saying "You suck at Fante but I don't want to make you feel bad" :) What a nice guy. Some new volunteers arrived today. I'm hoping to meet up with them tonight or maybe tomorrow. There are only 2 coming in this month. It is their super slow season right now. It's crazy that I've already been here a month and I'm not the new person any  more. Geoff and I were talking about how everything is just natural now...normal. It didn't take very long to adjust, pretty crazy actually. I'm really sleepy today. Not sure why. I took a long nap this morning after my cooking lesson, got up and showered and had lunch, now I'm just relaxing again. Might take yet another nap. My sister is getting her hair done...she's getting braids. It looks awesome. She told me that I have to get mine done before I leave. I really love how she wants to show me everything and wants me to try everything. I've tried a new food almost every day since I've been here. I've liked most of it...but there have been a few things I could probably do without eating again. I'm willing to try anything at least once :) You definitely have to have an open mind here. I'm probably going to miss the food once I leave.Hopefully the African grocery store will have some things that I can get back home.I think I'm going to enjoy a Saturday afternoon nap :) Its so hot today, probably another reason I'm so sleepy. Love and miss you all :) XOXO

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