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Ω2

Ghana: Exotic beaches and flying coconuts!

   It’s been a while since we last crossed borders with actual buildings and well-organized offices. In the previous countries, we were used to searching the huts where we could find the officers that would stamp our passports. When we arrived at the Ghanaian border, before asking even for our passports, they asked us for our Carnet de Passages en Douane. These are the documents necessary in many of the developing countries, ensuring that we will not sell our vehicles without paying duties. We had our Carnet checked three times while crossing the border. God bless ELPA that granted us all the essential documents and we have nothing to fear!

In Ankasa Nature Reserve the bamboos have formed a magical scenery, the so-called Bamboo Cathedral…

   Entering the country, we traveled mainly on the coastal road and discovered many stunning beaches, where we wild camped, swam and had fun. Especially near Akwidaa Beach, we discovered an abandoned, wooden pavilion on a serene part of the beach… real magic! We loved it so much that we spent two days there!

Enjoying the serene beach that we discovered and kept us there for two days…

   While traveling on the coast of Ghana, we visited a few of the numerous castles built by the colonialists. They were constructed for the protection of the coast from the other European powers. Portuguese, Danes, Swedes, Dutch and British were in conflict for controlling the commerce on the Gold Coast, as they used to call Ghana because of its vast gold reserves. However, by the 16th century, slave trade became more profitable than trading gold or ivory. The castles were turned into prisons for the slaves, who stayed there waiting for the ships that would take them far, to an unknown destiny… Slave trade was formally declared illegal at the beginning of the 19th century but unfortunately it is practically active even nowadays. You can read a relative story by our friends of the pin project.

The competition for controlling the trade on the Gold Coast was fierce between the colonists.

   Unfortunately, as much as we were impressed by the beaches and the castles in Ghana, we were equally disappointed by its people. The slaps on the face came one after another. In the previous countries we were accustomed of everybody greeting us with a wide smile. From the first day in Ghana, however, we noticed that when we were greeting the locals they did not even bother to reply. They just looked at us with an arrogant attitude wondering why we would speak to them without knowing them.

Sunset on our favourite beach…

   One morning, there were kids gathered on the beach where we had camped and Christina started to play with them, while I was packing the tent. When we got on the motorbikes, all set, we saw two of them running away and we were really surprised to see them leaving without even saying goodbye. Ten minutes later we knew why… In the next village Christina noticed that her backpack was half-open and her cell phone was missing! We turned back where some other kids brought us the cell phone immediately. They were blaming each other but Christina was not interested in finding out who was the responsible one… She was really upset because while she thought that she had met some nice kids in this country, they proved her wrong once again.

The exotic beach of Princes Town!

   The next slap on the face was for me… I was overlooking a beach, photographing some fishermen that were pulling their nets out of the sea. Christina saw a few of them getting annoyed, waving me to stop photographing, but I was looking at them through the camera and could not notice that. I was too far to talk to them anyway. Then, I saw someone dropping the nets, grabbing a coconut and starting running towards me! I could not believe this was happening and I was frozen for a moment! When I realized that he was really furious, determined to hit me, I started the engine and I disappeared as if I had robbed a bank! Luckily no coconut found its way to me…

This photo was the reason I almost got hit by a furious fisherman!

   Sad and disappointed as we were, we headed to Kumasi, where we were hosted by the family of a friendly guy, Densi. Luckily, in their home we found ourselves in a haven of friends, because elsewhere… impoliteness and arrogance were astonishing. And it’s not that they are being hostile only to foreigners. Unfortunately, they don’t get along with each other either. We are tired to see people picking up fights on the street.

In many West African countries some kinds of rodents are considered delicacies and are sold by the roadside!

   West Africa’s largest market is in Kumasi and it has taken over even the railway. Until a few years ago the train would cross the market every now and then. The stall owners were used to remove their merchandise in an eye blink. Nowadays the train does not pass from there, so the occupation of the railway has become permanent. The city sky is full of bats, which you can also find on earth, sold roasted by vendors! Christina was ready to try one but as soon as she saw them roasted in whole, with their head, wings and legs, she changed her mind…

We have eaten many weird kinds of meat but we have no idea from what animal they came from. Pay attention to the grill which is made out of refrigerator’s elements!

Now we are in Accra, the modern capital city of Ghana. Here we had a nice surprise… Through our host, we met Nikos, a Greek who lives here! He is the first Greek we met since Morocco. Christina is preparing some Greek recipes every day (as long as we can find the proper ingredients!) and we enjoy them all together, talking and laughing around the table until it gets late…

The canons of colonists are nowadays a toy for the children…


 

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