Have you ever seen a beautiful girl with a chicken, there is something very novel here. I took a van called a Tro Tro back to Ho, truly, Ghana has been a transportation pleasure after Togo.
This Sexy Ghana girl had a chicken in a plastic bag, what a line, I mean, how often does a man meet a girl with a chicken.
Ho, Ghana West Africa --- Saturday, December 11, 2010
She did not speak enough English to talk, so I took photos.
There are more photos of her in the photos of Ghana section.
This is typical landscape in most of Africa I have visited, plenty of ground vegetation with these large loner trees. If you looked at a map you would see that traveling by Tro Tro along ridge of some smaller mountains or hill, I would estimate about 1500 meters, just minor mountains.
The best reason to drive a car would be to take photos along side the road. This photo was taken from the window of the van, and only when I was lucky enough to have the roadside grass not obstructing the view. While I can experience and enjoy the view, the grass causes a lot of problem, a large bus is better for photos.
Suspension Bridge over Volta River in Ghana.
This is a good photo to cut a photo out of, the modern photographers almost never show a photo as they took them, they doctor them in Photoshop, I almost never do so unless there is a great reason.
I put this in Paint.net and cut the photo out of the 3648 x 2736 original pixel photo. I now have a photo Blog on china-marbles.info where I will write about these photography ideas. We have also just completed a complete photo system, where I publish the full size photos continuously and then can sell them in real time.
This photo and the sexy Ghana girl photo above are the type of photos I enjoy taking, in these photos I am attempting to explain the feelings I experienced, they are often complex and confusing, life is not just a tourist attraction, it is interactive.
The older women staring and begging us to buy.
The younger girl was actually hiding from the camera, this to me was a beautiful, young, coy, Ghana girl at here youthful age, where energy is still alive and full of passion.
When I write, I tend to want to warn people of the possible traumas along the path, I am fully aware the types of stresses I can handle in stride would make people run for the Five Star Hotel or go home. Therefore, I lean towards explaining the negatives. However, the my reality is much more playful, the sexy girl knew I was focusing on her, she did not try stuff herself into the dress. This photo reminded me of Sosua, Dominican Republic where this was the standard way of dress for the working girls that populate the city.
This is not a working girl, please do not put words into my mouth, although she looks like the Dominican Republic girl, she is just a simple Ghana girl with a chicken, Maybe with a second hand dress that just does not fit quite the way it was intended, too much to pack inside. It was not a problem; it was part of my daily Ghana feelings.
Sexy Ghana Girl with a Chicken
I want to find a Hotel to stay in until after Christmas, I think it is time to rejuvenate myself by staying in one city for three weeks. Today I am going to return to Ho to see about living there. I have been talking with a girl there over the cell phone, and decided I need to say hello again, she is just too smart and pretty, I said goodbye too quick, a problem with quick travel, you never give the place a proper chance.
This is girl is one of the smartest and prettiest girls I have ever met in Africa, I realized I was frustrated with the Hotel in Ho.
There is a problem to be 100 free, I can go anywhere on the planet, this overwhelming number of options makes me a little crazy, hard to be happy with so many locations with greener grass on the other side.
Koforidua, Ghana West Africa --- Thursday, December 9, 2010
My Christmas options are:
Cape Coast - The Samma Hotel is good
Mampong - There is a Hotel called the Cinema Hotel that is great.
Kumasi, difficult, I do not know a good hotel, I need a name?
Ho where I have a friend, there is a couple better ones, I could pay more.
Bolgatanga in the North, but I do not know a good Hotel.
Slow Travel is Best
I am 100 percent aware that travel is stressful; it is more fun to stay in one location than to travel. There is this romanticizing of travel, it is not moving that is good, it is staying and getting to know the city and people that is good. Sadly, this depends first that you enter a Hotel with a happy face on it. There are cities I long to return to in Africa, for example I love Kpalime, in Togo and Natingou in Benin.
Johnny the pilot was going to come to Africa, complicated, but I realize now he may come to Africa, but I cannot change my plans for him, he is not prepared.
I will cough up the 400-700 dollars to enter a new section of West Africa by flying to Liberia after Christmas, either from Accra, Ghana or Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. It is time to go to countries I do not know, where the air is fresh.
Looking for a Place in Ghana for Christmas
The roads are good in Ghana so far, two lanes, not busy and full of Tro Tro’s, the name for the vans that shuttle around from city to city. I can hop on and hop off in a way, but the taxi situation is difficult, they are not to be trusted. This means that small inner city transportation by taxi is confusing to understand, and can be a big expense if not careful. They do not have meters, therefore it is negotiations and Ghana Taxis are more than willing to ask too much, or just drive assuming I will pay, One driver already learned, I do not care, I paid 5 when he asked 10, and something along the lines me explaining go "F2(K yourself."
I stopped in three cities and looked for Hotel rooms before I landed in the city of Koforidua. There is almost no reason to stop and stay in the small villages. It looks as if the majority of them happened to be there by chance. Like they put a highway through, and then all the people built businesses or houses along the side the road. This type of city is long and has no center, really no fun, lacking a heart. I am always looking for city park in center spider roads town, preferably with a river through the center.
There is a suspension bridge over the Volta River that is beautiful, maybe a good place to land for a night or two, but the room situation is bleak unless you have a car. Which, the Lonely Planet guidebook assumes you have a car, so somewhat anal and always boring.
Koforidua, Ghana West Africa --- Thursday, December 9, 2010
I can only emotionally be satisfied with a room price under 15 Cedis, about 10 US for a Hotel, any more and they suck. Even at 15, they suck, but one in five has been built with a semblance of architectural knowledge. The other four are as if the builder was lost on the basic idea, just built rooms with no sense of organization, and never finished, not that anything in Africa is organized.
My present room in the Kes is 14 Cedis, the light does not work, common shower, which is ok, because nobody uses it. I have a light to I carry as back. The curtains are so thin I had to double them up, then clothes pin them to make them block the sun or white watchers. There seems to be almost no hotels close to the central Tro Tro stations in this city, this means I must take a taxi to go long distances. The Kes is an obnoxious walk to anything of interest, but clean and satisfying enough to stay more than one night. Ho and Koforidua are both extra nice clean cities.
I am Hungry
I know of three restaurants worth a darn between in Togo or Ghana.
Atakpame, Togo Cafeteria Madone
Lome, Togo Al Mahata Chicken Restaurant
Now, the road side stand here close to the Kes Hotel on the main road, this Ghana man actually cared what I ate, I mean, he asked if I like the food, almost unheard of in Africa. He than noticed I did not eat the cabbage cole slaw stuff with catsup and mayonnaise, and the fried plantain and said,
"I will not serve that again to you."
I told him I like the Cilantro and he agree to add more to the Fried Rice, this was all for two Cedis or about 1.25 US, and truly, I am hungry.
I am not kidding, I am hungry, the food in the stores is just cracker and cookies, I am having trouble, and I am not going to eat Fufu, Maniac, Cassava or Yam with oil. Moreover, the last things I need to do it eat the other packaged fast food, I will admit the Ginger cookies in Ghana are special, but I do not need them.
Truly, the only way to eat truly healthy is to pay 15 dollar per meal, or have a kitchen here in West Africa, it is become taxing on my nerves to continually be scrounging for food.
Note, Dixon the manage of the Kes Hotel is a 0 on a 10 point scale for personality, I have never seen a more blasé person, not bad or mean, just a nothing, but obviously smart. I will stay another night because the room is a good value for Ghana, I truly cannot emotionally handle overpaying for rooms, it takes away my sense of well being in life when I overpay. I do want to say to myself,
"I overpaid, I got crap for my money."
This may well be the most taxing problem in West Africa, the lack of value for your money.
Almost Computer Panic
I was lying in bed watching a movie on my computer; I have about 400 on a Hard Drive and tend to watch one or two per day. Well, the electricity went out, then came right back on, while off my laptop electrical cord suddenly stops charging the computer. I got it work, and then it was random, often taking 10 minutes to try and for it work. This causes me to have a nervous panic, like suddenly I am unemployed.
These Computer cords are a true problem; I think they take the beating on low or high current, and save the computer. My room, I suspect has low current, and this burns the circuits up inside the transformer box. I think I do not want to know the true current, I cannot just move every time there is low current.
I needed today, and to buy a new cord, 10 years ago when I was traveling, this was the kiss of death, and you needed to return home to buy a new one. Well, I was lucky, I walked around for about one hour and with the help of this man by the name of Eric a student, I found two shops. The one was brain dead; the worker was a small boy in head, not responding, just standing in one place. The second shop was great, he had used cords sent to here from Japan, the original was 19.5, the one I purchased in Guatemala was 18.5, and the one I got in Cote d’Ivoire was 18.5. This new one is again 19.5 and I think the additional volt will help it to start.
I am now on cord number four on this computer, averaging about 40 dollars per cord. This one cost 70 Cedis or about 40 Dollars.
Eric kept telling me he was hungry, so I finally said,
"Do you want money to eat?"
I gave him two Cedis, or about 1.25 to go eat, and I was finished with him following, or leading, hard to say. I would have found the shops, just would have been more asking people.
Relief and Laundry
Everything is going good here; the cleaning woman offered to clean my clothes, normally in Africa the only way to get this done is to have a girlfriend, so I was lucky, the other luck is more complicated to arrange. She wanted money before, so I gave her the laundry soap I had, it would do the 4 shirts and 5 pants three times, but I will never see the balance of soap, that is part of the pay, whether I agree or not she will keep the soap. She only wanted 5 Cedis, this is not cheap, but I am tired, I need a relief.
Solving Problems is Energy
The fatigue of travel is often the overwhelming amount of small insidious problems to solve in a day, I could never write and list out all the small situations that need solved in one day, it would take longer than living. The longer I stay, the less my energy is used to solve problem, this is why I often recommend people to stay 10 days, and almost always at least two, to move over day is the path to the Looney bin.
Every time I change cities, I must walk out into and open area, or up on the Hotel roof and take a GPS reading to log in, so I can make the map in the corner of the Blog change.
Koforidua Ghana Hotel called the Kes and Computer Cord
Because of the failed election process in Cote d’Ivoire, an imminent civil war is possible. A war where there are not two clear sides, where voters can start fighting for the person they voted for and expecting benefits and money. This means I would be a target of frustration; maybe a person just attacks me because of some deep-seated anger over the differences in lifestyle between Africa and the USA. I cannot hide, I cannot blend in, and I would be an obvious target.
I was or am working my way towards presently toward Cote d’Ivoire, towards a possible civil war; I could fly from Accra or Abidjan to Monrovia, Liberia.
Ho, Ghana West Africa --- Wednesday, December 8, 2010
This is the big picture map of my planned overland journey in Africa.
This is a second alternative path, with a major problem; I am told I am required to get a Visa to Nigeria in the USA only.
It is highly possible a man by the name a Johnny, a private charter pilot I met in Dominican Republic could fly to Accra, Ghana or Lome, Togo. So here I am wondering where to wander to in Africa.
Ho is an incredibly boring Ghana city, but very clean and simple, Kpetoe a place for Kente cloth was even more boring; more or less a village built on the highway.
Koforidus, Ghana as Possible Staging Point to Accra
I am thinking I need to travel to Koforidus, while only 32 miles from Accra, it could still be a one and half hour drive there to apply for Visas or look for airplane tickets. A ticket on Kayak.com is roughly 400 US Dollars, an expensive jump to Monrovia, Liberia, and any way I do it, I still have to go to Accra to get a visa to Liberia.
Living in Ghana
Living in small Ghana cities can be either boring, or full of markets and interesting people, while generally I would say boring unless you travel up to Bolgatanga. Togo is always energy packed and full of life, people walking around, Moto moving from place to place, while Accra or Ghana is in many ways a traffic jam.
Project Workers, NGO’s, Missionaries, and Students in Ghana
Ghana has many of these types of white people, there are many young people looking to get a stamp on their job resume saying they slummed it in Africa. Christian missionaries are here in a place that is mostly Christian, NGO or Project workers are trying to find "African Causes" to use to collect donation giving them a job, and a way to wander around in Ghana.
I can safely assume when I meet a white person here, they are under one of the possible labels, I think also possible Peace Corp kids more or less on endless party.
To say the least, I am enthusiastic with the white people visiting Africa, and this is the last place a Black person in the USA wants to come, they want to distance themselves that they are African.
Where to go, what to do it the question always on my mind, I am a man without a clear path, and my highest hope would be to find a nice small village, with that one exceptional nice Hotel that is pleasant to hang out. I am sitting here in a 12 Cedi per night Hotel called the "Work and Happiness Hotel." a hotel with a bar area the same size as the hotel. Then has all the windows facing a hallway whereby I can hear everyone walking by my room. Then to boot, the place is on the outer edge of the city and hard to reach.
This is just another day in Paradise called Africa, where nothing every works right, always just one notch below correct. Think about it, there are presently two Presidents in Cote d’Voire because both of candidates has declared himself the victor, and any rule of law is thrown out the window. This is a good way of looking at Africa, a place where at any given time; common sense, rules, and the legal system just to turn stupid, like a bunch of children playing, with guns in their hands, more or less mafia tactics.
The saving grace is I have a Verizon Global Internet plan on the BlackBerry and can have internet access in my room, tether.com’ed to my computer, I am in Business, and at the end of the day, I can always just work and sit. This plan is great, I do not need to fight for internet access daily.
This is to me the hope for Africa, this girl from Ho, Ghana by the name of Patience. She is highly educated, speaks perfect English and has knowledge of the outside world. I believe women are the hope of the future of the world, men are too busy being clever.
A good explanation of the Cote d’Ivoire situation link:
Roadblocks on the Land Journey to Liberia from Ghana
I am now in Ouaga Burkina Faso looking for an internet cafe that is user friendly and does not have the extremely horrible management program called CyberCafePro.
Life is Good
a life less normal...
Ghana Food Fufu Video
Mampong, Ghana West Africa
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
This is a photo of Naomi in the Video City Hotel in Mampong, Ghana making Fufu.
Fufu is made from Cassava and Plantains, or with Yams. It is an exciting food because they use this large straight wooden mallet to mash the Cassava and Plantains into food to eat.
They will eat the mashed Cassava and Plantains called Fufu with a ground sauce made of Tomatoes and Peppers.
The process of making Fufu by my interpretation and the understanding as of today is listed, however, this may change as the Fufu culture unfolds.
1. Growing of Plantains and Cassava together in the field plot.
2. Boiling of the Cassava or Yams
3. Mashing of the Cassava and Plantains, the exciting part, or sometimes Yams.
4. Grinding of Tomatoes, Pepper and making the sauces.
5. Eating the Fufu by plucking with fingers and dipping into the sauce.
Fufu One Video
I am in Bolgatanga, Ghana presently and have now traveled too far north for the proper growing of Plantains. The locals have almost stopped eating Fufu, therefore I have decided to publish this video with very good clips of the exciting part. I hope to add later a more completed story, but for now, a very exciting Fufu video if you want to call Fufu exciting.
If you received this in your email box, you probably need to click on this link to go and see the video.
Ghana Food Fufu Video
Looking at African Poverty
Bolgatanga or Bolga, Ghana West Africa
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
I had a conversation with a consultant working here in West Africa, was talking about the poverty he saw as he drove around. I did not say much as I was in agreement, however, for two days now I have been nagged by this comment,
- As we drove around you could see poverty. -
I realized later, I do not think you can drive around in West Africa and see poverty. This whole places looks poor, because of the dusty clay soil used to build the homes is a fooler.
I have not seen man poor people; it is hard to find a barefoot person or torn clothing.
I was in agreement with him, because as my Betazoid side kicked in, I empathized with him, not with reality, I was seeing poverty as he saw poverty, in his eyes and I could empathize and agree, however later when I disconnected from empathy with him, I reverted back and empathized with in the streets reality.
Looking at African Poverty
Bolgatanga or Bolga Ghana, West Africa
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
I was in room 15 of the St Joseph Hotel here in Bolga, a good room and quiet at 11 Ghana Cedis for a self-contained room. Self-Contained is a shower and toilet inside the room here in Ghana English.
I moved to shared toilet, shower room at the Sandgarden for 8 Cedi, and had to interview my fans. I entered 5 rooms and every fan was obnoxiously noisy except for room 26, and it has a cough and will soon develop pneumonia.
I had an even noisier fan in the Date Hotel in Accra and moved to the Eclipse Hotel with a great room at 11 Cedis with quiet fan.
There are so many reasons to live in a Hotel or to not live in a Hotel; it becomes a nightmare of variables to check.
West Africa Hotels are ok for one or two nights, and then a person has to call no-joy and search for the one room in various hotels that is acceptable for the long term. I have to search for the Hotel room, not for the Hotel, I try to find the one room that works, not the Hotel. This is why I am saying room 15 and maybe 14 in St Joseph Hotel.
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