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Trip to Ghana - JackDurrant.com

Trip to Ghana

Day 1
Over the Easter holidays, I went to Ghana with some people from my school. I stayed there for 10 nights with no Internet access and a very cheap phone. In a way, it wasn’t as bad as I expected it to be, but at the same time, it was much more extreme than I expected. That is mainly because I didn’t bring all the stuff that I was meant to buy in England.

On the first night, I found out that I was meant to take a mosquito net with me. We stayed in a hostel for the first two nights, but it was a place where a lot of things weren’t provided, like what you would expect in England or in the United States. In fact, I might as well list what I was supposed to bring right now:

  • Mosquito net
  • Sleeping bag
  • Roll-up mattress
  • Water bottle
  • Toilet paper
  • Plate
  • Cutlery

I’m sure this list would be a lot longer if I remembered everything, but I’ve got 11 days to write about and this blog post is going to be long enough without too many details. Anyway, I was given a kit list a while before I went to Ghana, but I didn’t bother to read it and that was a big mistake.

Day 2
In the morning of the second day, we went out for breakfast. We were looking for somewhere to eat and someone told us that their cafe was that way, so we followed her. We waited around an hour for our food to get here. Later on, we found out that was quite normal in Ghana. When I ordered breakfast, I ordered a bottle of water with it. When we left, I felt really sick. Later on, I found out that I was meant to put chlorine drops in any water I had, not just tap water.

Day 3
I had fruit and bread for breakfast. Then, we travelled to Elmina to do our community project of fixing a school.

We stayed there for four nights. I had the job of painting inside the staff room, but I didn’t get as much work done as I hoped, because I was sick for two of the days there.

I painted a little bit, but I got very tired sometimes. I saw that the other people working on the staff room were working faster than me, which meant I was only getting a bit done. However, I was still getting work done.

Day 4
I was still sick on that day, so I couldn’t really do any work. I don’t know why I was sick on that day, and I sat on a toilet about four times that day.

The water supply was broken on that day too, so nobody could do any work. We went to Elmina Castle and had a tour of it. I couldn’t really listen to the tour guide, because I couldn’t handle the heat.

We went to the cafe at Elmina Castle and they not only took over two hours to bring our food to the table, but they missed out some of our orders. Everyone was eating their lunch apart from me and two other people. We asked about the orders and they had forgotten to write them down or something. Anyway, it was another hour. They brought my chicken burger and someone else’s lunch to the table. Then, they brought the third person something with chips and I asked if the chips I ordered were coming next. He had forgotten that too but we just asked for the bill, as I was not hungry any more anyway.

Day 5
I was still sick on that day, so I couldn’t do much. There isn’t much to write.

Day 6
I did a bit of work painting window shutters with really thick black paint. The black paint was very hard to work with because it was so thick. I’m glad we were only using that paint to paint window shutters.

We went to a cafe and the teachers bought everyone a beer as a reward for the work we had done. I was the only one who didn’t have a beer. I know this makes me seem like a different person, but I’m already addicted to Facebook, Twitter, the rest of the Internet, and tea. I don’t need another addiction. One of my classmates, sitting next to me, got really drunk, which I actually found quite entertaining. He is the only one in the group we were in who hasn’t accepted my Facebook friend request, but he was saying that I was his best friend. I don’t know if he was making a joke about how I am different from others or he really was that drunk, but he looked like a total idiot and it was hilarious.

On that night, I got my own tent, which was nice treat.

Day 7
We left the school where we were working. When we said goodbye, we donated some money to get the asbestos roofs replaced with roofs made from a non-toxic substance. We also left them some old clothes and other stuff that we didn’t want any more, but might be useful to the children at the school.

We then went to Kakum National Park and stayed in a rainforest for two nights. The first night was in a treehouse. On the second night, we slept on a platform fairly close to the ground, with a roof on the top of it.

We had dinner at the Rainforest Cafe. As usual, we waited for about two hours for our food to get to the table. I found the staff quite rude, because they were ignoring me when I was trying to get a drink.

After that, it was a half hour walk to the treehouse and there were some other people sleeping in the treehouse as well, as it was quite large and could hold something like 20 people.

We took a break in the treehouse and at 8:00 PM, we went for ¬†night walk, hoping to see animals. We didn’t see anything except for a few snakes, because everyone in my group was making too much noise.

Day 8
We got up at around 6:00 AM and went on a canopy walk, which is basically a long line of rope bridges. I used all the blank photos on both my disposable cameras. I took two disposable cameras because I didn’t want to lose my good digital camera. I also took a cheap ¬£20 phone instead of my smartphone.

We had breakfast at the Rainforest Cafe, because we were too tired to cook breakfast.

That night, we chose to sleep in the huts as they were cheaper and not such a long walk away.

Day 9
I woke up at 5:30 AM and the two people I was sharing a hut with were both still sleeping. I was furthest away from the exit but I really needed to use the toilet.

We left the national park and spent the last two nights in the Stumble Inn. That place is run by people from developed countries, so I was glad to find toilet paper in the bathrooms and mosquito nets in the bedrooms. However, I was camping for the first night. Half my group rented a family room out, so I got my own tent.

Day 10
We didn’t do much that day. I did some of my reflections of the trip and ordered a family room with three other people in my group.

Day 11
We left the Stumble Inn and went back to Accra. We got to the air port a few hours early, but waiting wasn’t a big deal. When we went through airport security, I forgot to take the 1.5 litre bottle of water I took for the journey to the airport, but they didn’t say anything. In some less developed countries, the security probably isn’t as much of a big deal. However, I kept getting held up, because my passport photo was taken when I had that crazy long hair.

The flight back to England wasn’t too bad because there was a touchscreen for each seat, with movies on demand. A six hour flight became a two hour flight. It was an overnight flight and I couldn’t sleep well on a plane, so I was really tired. However, I still spent a lot of the day using the Internet, catching up with what I missed while I was gone.

Friday 20th April 2012 - Leave a comment

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