Akatsi not Tove Ghana
I am in some smaller type city called Akatsi, I hope to spell correct, a few drums, a few wanna cell ECO crap, a little of this, all the signs are old, and many girls, hooked on black guys it seems city. I have not idea what is happening in this city, other than it has internet.
I got off about 15 minutes from a larger than normal bus, maybe mini-bus, bigger than a van that I took from Tema to Akatsi, I wanted to go to Tove, but too small, nothing there.
There were a couple of Hotels after the big water, or big river bridge, although all is more or less red clay very low on the totem pole houses, and then there is Akatsi. I am not sure about this place, I feel or sense someone has hung around in this place too long and made some tourist junk, the stuff I was trying to avoid. It could have been the Peace Corp; I have multiple accounts of Peace Corps helping on ECO crap and Hotels. There is natural tendency to get in business for Peace Corps persons after they figure out the lay of the land. Not the best idea, but they still do, they also get out of the Peace Corps with a saving set up for them, earned while they maybe worked.
Akatsi is nice, the people are nice, they are used to seeing me, the White man, however still curious. I think the local native language has changes. The girl in the hotel is too sweet for comfort, she is a doll, but I think she lied on her age form.
Ok, life is good, I have a large wastebasket full of water in my room for the showers, and I guess I drink it, but other do not.
Plastic Garbage, those 55 gallons babies make the best dip shower water holder, then a small plastic dipper, a big bowl. I am not sure; Africa seems confused on how to do the dip shower thing. Nevertheless, they do, in an awkward way. I am sad I missed a couple of brick made stone shower set ups in Apam, I saw a couple of girls showering, but I was not paparazzi enough to take pictures of girls showering, I looked though, and they did not lie on their age form.
Carrying water has become normal, the water is a central well, a big pump handle and collection process, although the plastic or aluminum holder are awkward. They need to look at the drawings in the bible and make some good hold on the hip, or on the head types. They spill water with the on the head types, as they just use big tubs. IfI was motivated I would find some of the proper types and put right here to show all of you, maybe next week… Hehehe
Akatsi not Tove Ghana
Tema Ghana Towards Togo
Saturday, August 26, 2006
I am going east toward Togo today, I have many considerations, they may be the same for all travel decision, and however, normally the decision is obvious.
- Time to destination?
- Is there a hotel in the city?
- Is the culture interesting?
- Close to Togo Border, yet not corrupted by border.
I am traveling through Africa to see what the normal Africa is more or less or in this case West Africa. Then of course the specific culture, then in most of Africa the language group or ethnic specific cultures. Tribes are not correct here as there is presently no obvious clear definable difference between the tribes. Moreover, tribes means in the brain of people to be primitive, that is not true, a person can be from a tribe it seems, yet be very modern.
There is a type of cloth made or I believe woven in Ghana, I have not seen it being made, however it may be done in the north. There are cultures in a country, the real, the wanna sell culture, the tourist culture, and maybe the natural look at trees culture, a great way to avoid people.
What the guidebooks and the locals push is what they want to sell me, the Kente Cloth is I think this; I have successfully avoided the tourist in Ghana, except in the city of Cape Coast. There I saw some made to sell, not necessarily used in daily life, however they want to sell the tourist as a part of the culture.
Cultures change, I think the Kente clothe is what they use to make the long dress like thingy that men where, it may also be the church type long cover a lot of fat dresses the women wear. There is dress up society that mean bright colors and normally the bigger people, a car, a walking around, a culture not interesting to me.
TODAY’S TRAVEL CHOICE
I could go to what I would assume is another empty tourist beach by the name of ADA, it is not people culture, more a beach culture, however the information in the guidebook is leaning toward, not-Ghana culture, more of made to sell culture. I will not go to Ada, Ghana today.
Looking at a map, I can see the bigger cities or think they are the bigger cities. Then I zoom in on the map and the number of cities increases. The Lonely Planet has a completely different set of cities and has cities it considers tourist attractions. It is difficult to use the Lonely Planet Map here because the Vans like to travel to the Ghana cities and does not care about what tourist want to see. The street signs, the buses are coordinated or planned to go to a place that may not be on the map of the Lonely Planet.
I am accustomed to looking at maps, I know how to read a map and figure out the best path. This is funny, a map is, was, and is always about finding the best travel path. The guide though more or less plucks cities of interest from the country, then maybe tells you how to travel from big city to big city, however does not tell you all the transits, or steps. The paper does not allow this; it takes too much paper and would use the whole book for travel directions.
In the end, a traveler needs to do the heavy lifting and figure out how to travel from one location to another. On the other hand, if the guidebook were specific, the readers would always be complaining that it was not correct. The guide give the times for the big buses or I think SCT buses, however I have yet to use one, I cannot be bothered to figure out all of this, a local called it Transport, as opposed to TroTro. She did not use the word bus; she said transport thereby meaning big bus.
KENYA IS CITY TARGET
No, my target is Tove, I changed my mine, Kenya is interesting closer to the river or big water, but I think the lake is a dam, not natural, would not be natural culture. I think Tove is just up in the hills,
Yes, Tove is out of the Volta River floodplain and is higher, maybe, not easy to figure on my map, but it is up river, therefore had to be up. There are small streams or river leading down from the higher ground; I think they must have been smart enough to use the water to transport slaves down the river, and not the sole rendition that is always shown of slaves being pushed through the trees.
I am looking for a place with no tourist, which is easy, so far, only Cape Coast had tourist, but I also want a culture where Ghana has not bitten and thinks it is significant. This is normally not in the guidebooks, not pointed out and for sure avoided by travelers and tourist.
I think we will be leaving the Anglophone and going towards the Francophone culture as I get close to Togo, on the way to Tema I saw the signs start to have the words also in French.
Tove is maybe another language-evolved culture, the guide says, I have met nothing yet, but Fanti, but I am doing a coastal run, nothing stays normal along coast, the transportation is too easy. The culture changes as fast as the transportation.
Aaagh, CNN and BBC is on for about one-hour on this Metro TV in Tema, then it changes to this never ending singing about some Christian or Hip Hop type, or some commentary type things. TV is bleak in Ghana; CNN not my favorite source is better than nothing and better than any local channels. I have not seen a true cable or dish TV, however I think there is some Satellite.
I have to change, annoying the music.
I will go to Tove, Ghana, then I can stage a jump to Aflao, I cannot find it on the map, aagh, disappeared again, it is on the street signs. Lonely Planet shows Aflao, but the Encarta encyclopedia does not. I will search. It is at the border of Ghana and Togo on the Ghana side it appears. I like to stay on the culture clash borders, and muse. Therefore, I will spend one night there if it is possible.
Tove it is, I will write it on my hand, and on a piece of paper, to show the bus or TroTro people. I will say Togo though, and make sure they send me the right direction. If I leave now, 6:55 AM, I should be there by 12:00 noon, I will stop in the Internet at 8:00 AM for an hour, post all this and move on out, 25,000 Cedis is the price of taxi from Togo TroTro they say, to the Kakumo Royal Hotel here in Tema. Rooms from 70,000 to up to 120,000 Cedi. Taxi here is 20,000 to 25 for private, if you can figure out the shared, you are better than I am, but I am lazy on this travel factor.
IF Tove is a problem, no hotels, I will move towards a hotel towards Tove, if I say or show I want to sleep, somebody will figure out where the Abroni can sleep and pay on the normal people’s path to Togo. The tourist path is difficult and not so clear why it exists.
I am hoping to leave the fish culture and enter the chicken culture.
No internet for 5 days today is Saturday. Next internet is probably Lome, Togo, however strangely it seems like the world is getting more modern as I travel towards Togo and not less, it could be in Tove…
Tema Ghana Towards Togo
Ghana Border Togo Border
I am on the border to leave Ghana and enter the country of Togo.
I am in a bigger than I expected city of location, with Internet... hehehe
Aflao, Ghana, it has many hotels, and is funky, but I can take a taxi from here to Lome, Togo.
I have many post, however the speed is problem, however I cannot use a Flash or Thumbdrive, easier to connect my computer. I will spend the time, security problems also, to carry a computer, but I will connect in Lome, Togo very soon.
A very small country on the planet.
Ghana Border Togo Border
Akatsi Ghana Hotel
I thought I would go to Tome, ended up in the next bigger city of Akatsi, it seems invaded by something, not sure, but a few White people. Has internet on the near stop level, but ok.
I went to some Perfect Hotel and it was so far from the city, I left and walked back. Too crazy, unless I want to drink in their entertainment center, or I do not like the locals, then perfect. I went back to the city, now found a friendly Hotel called the Black Cat, the water is missing, but Charity the one girl that works there is sweet. Plus there is a neighborhood, I think better located if I want to see the culture of Ghana. I think there is about 5 hotels here, but hard to suss out, the taxis are only saying two...
I will NOt have internet maybe for a few days, after that, who knows when I land in Togo.
The city is loud, has a chubby girl convention going on, and men dressed in sheets. Maybe it is the Kente cloth, but looks machine made to me...
This is Saturdays, I think the Perfect whatever with the large entertainment center would have been miserable, although the room was very nice.
IT is a choice, do you have a car or do you not?
There is not taxis to return, or I would have maybe got a room.
Black Cat is meager, I have a great room, 100,000 Cedi, I think she would have negotiated.
Not my idea of Ghana typical culture here, but it is better than Tema.
Ghana Computer Problems
Friday, August 25, 2006
I started having computer problem with my computer when I tried to load a DVD movie in my computer, probably made in Nigeria. Ever since then, I have had problems, or maybe this is the first starting point I can remember.
I do not know, maybe electricity cuts, maybe DVD or CD ROM from Nigeria, I do know that Microsoft Updates can do this also, Norton was impossible to stop, updates were made on my system, I did not want.
The Internet here in Tema is not working; the girl says she thinks at 11, I know she is guessing. The electricity has gone on and off three times in the last hour. It did not go off since I arrived and I thought the electricity here was more stable.
The electricity is a good steady power, it does not go up and done, however when it goes off, it goes off. I do not see weak power, or fuses breaking.
On the outside, possibility the whole country is having problem, I am going to start using my battery when I type, and only use the cord to charge the battery. I will see if this stops the locking of the computer, it could be a power glitch.
I really am lost to try to figure out how to stop these problems, there are so many variables. I backed up my 2 Gig Flash drive, defragged it, then deleted the data, and then put back on the Flash so that the data was organized better. I am feeling a memory crunch, I mean, or think there is an overload of memory use and it glitches the computer and locks. Freezes or is immovable, I then need to shut it off, and restart, I cannot book or hit CTR ALT Delete or anything, just a lock.
My 2 Gig Flash drive really makes me feel good, without this, I do not know how safe I would be for data. I put all my files that are not published to the internet on this chip, and then back it up on the computer. I keep the Chip in my secret pocket on me all the time, if my computer was stolen, I have the chip, if my chip is stolen, I have the computer in my room. Only when I am traveling with bag in tow is when both of them close, however most criminals are not smart enough to know what the chip is, so more or less I am safe.
I am going to work on some system for backing up my computer to the internet with the least amount of brainwave use on my part. I now have a 40 Gig of space host, I have about 35 Gig of space available, and we have it backed up on another host.
I am a wiz kid on this stuff really; I have only lost data by allowing another computer person in the USA to back up my data. I have not lost any data for 7 years. I allowed some person in a computer store to backup my drive to fix the computer, he did not do it correct and I lost data. I never allow anyone to backup my information.
I have everything duplicated somewhere, however right now I have about one gig of information that needs continually sent to the internet to be safe. This is a lot, hard to load up to the internet one gig; however, I will find a way. I have an 80 Gig hard drive in Thailand that I back up my whole computer when I am close. I guess I am no farther than 6 months away from having all my data backed up. This is not good, but 90 percent better than most people, I guess the proof is I have never myself lost data, although I did when I trusted a persons. CD Roms are worthless, they corrupt so easy, it is not even on my list, the only possible way is to get a couple of 2 Gig Flash drives and Fed Ex them home occasionally. Then I could get to a very expensive 1 month or less back up of information.
The bottom line, losing my Flash drive would not make me happy; however losing my computer would be not so bad.
I need an 80 Gig Hard Drive in 4-5 locations on the planet to back up my computer, then I would port, backup and move on, the internet is too slow for this type of backup.
Andrew helped me disable the CD ROM
Remove the updates from Microsoft downloaded because of Norton.
I hope this fixes... so far, not freeze.
Ghana Computer Problems
Areeba GPRS Internet Access Ghana
Friday, August 25, 2006
I took a photo, seen a sign in Accra that said,
- Access the internet over your cell phone. -
It was with the Areeba Cell phone company, now, I know it is maybe possible, that does not mean anything is easy.
I have decided it I want to do this, I must go to the main office in a country, probably here in Accra, Ghana; have them configure the systems with my blue tooth and such.
It may only mean I can see on my cell phone and not that I can actually dial in, however who knows. This process is laboriously complicated, but there is hope. IF I was flying into Ghana and only doing a Ghana trip, I would think about this, however I think Tigo is more common and another I forget. However, cannot really say, not paying that close of attention.
Ghana has many interesting small villages and it would be nice to have internet access, I could go about anywhere… maybe.
All this noise and crap they advertise about internet access is more than anyone would want to bothered about. I think the normal travelers are too busy writing mom to think of anything else. Nevertheless, they are not travelers; they are volunteers, not the most adventurous types, more in need of a ready to grab safety net of their volunteer organization. Not that safe, but they think it is….
Areeba GPRS Internet Access Ghana
West Africa Danger
Friday, August 25, 2006
I am continually trying to get my danger bearing, is this place dangerous, it seems safer than South America and for sure Central America or Mexico for just plane quick thefts, They have not really tried to steal or make me feel they would just rob me.
I have been accosted though by over-zealous, you have money, I do not, and you need to give it to me, or I will stand here and wait until you do. The one boy, a real young nut in Apam grabbed my ponytail band after I forgot it and was holding it hostage for money. I stepped on his foot and said give it to me, he face was about five inches from mine, a 12 year-old nutter.
Loes starts to holler at him and he gave it up, I was going to divorce the little thingy, after I had put my 180 pounds on his foot in my best smash of toes. I meant to itimidate, however really did not work.
This is the problem, intimidation does not work, either the vitamin deficit brain is not reacting or they just like violence. Extremely abnormal in the 80 percent of the planet called the developing world, however would be common in Europe and the USA. I think the men hanging around in the park in Berlin were some of the most dangerous I had seen for just plain sit around and drink bums.
Mexico I suppose can be the same dangerous as here, it is annoyingly macho and they like a standoff, I suppose the men like a macho standoff, I seen this in Agadez, with the Turags in Niger, the men liked to do the are you going to move or am I thing.
Loes doe not think it is dangerous, I think she was in the I-am-saving-them, they are poor, they cannot be dangerous mode of crazy volunteers. Then again she spent here time in Africa giving them money, this is what they want and she is a second class citizen, in their minds, a woman, not a person to pay attention too.
There is always a difference between theft and physical violence, in the end, it is walking down an isolated dark street where a person is in danger the most of personal violence, no dark alleys. I am an independent traveler, I do not think I have seen, maybe one person, however, I have only seen one person beside me who was traveling alone.
West Africa Danger
Friday, August 25, 2006
I am in Tema, Ghana about 30 mile or one-two hours east of Accra the biggest city in Ghana. I had a personal decision to make, a goal setting decision, I was ready to enter Accra and changed my mind. As we were entering Accra from the west, going east into Accra the traffic was so bad I could not imagine entering the city. Although it was more or less modern there was wall to wall cars, people, venders selling gum, and anything. It was not my idea of why I came to Africa.
This is the nutshell, why am I in any country, why go to a country, why go traveling. The prime directive of travel is to enjoy yourself, the trip is not about anyone but yourself, it is a voyeuristic trip into what one person, yourself like to see.
Well, I did not want to see some huge city in Africa, I have decided no more huge cities in India, I just do not like huge cities. The city is about two million , not really huge, but bigger than what I like, I suppose I like a city to be less than 100,000 and preferably only about 5000-10,000 persons, and then I am in the perfect city size.
Culture, I like culture, cities destroy cultures, therefore why go to a demolished city of no traditional cultures, only the new, lost wondering culture, no benchmarks, no clean traditions.
Tema is big also, but I can only handle anymore so long in a bus or van before I wish to leave. It took me close to 4 hours to go 70-80 miles, this is slow on any planet, and mostly because of the traffic of Accra.
Tema is interestingly modern, it has nice road, nice streets, everything I seen as I entered has an air of order, like the place was designed and organized by city planners, not common on the planet earth. I almost went for the hotel next to the bus stop after I was taken to a the Sakumo Royal Hotel in a residential hard to find culture, remote area. I asked instantly to Priscilla the girl working in the bar, it there internet close, she instantly understood the word, and I felt confident she was telling the truth, so I rented a room.
Sakumo is one of them places where the guidebook writer I think had a car and found the hotels in Tema, it is a Car Orientated Hotel, not a walking area, the immediate neighborhood is spread out with little major business areas. Strange, though, it does have a nice internet café just down the street from the Hotel, not close, but not far, a short walk. At night there is no street lights to the main street, it is an African maybe it is dangerous rush, however is probably safe enough.
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