Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Oh my wordly friends and family,
How the time doth meander on...
A blow by blow account of my past week!
28 Dec: The toddlers abuse me and each other. King throws anything he can get his hands on at me, including a huge plastic truck. My head is still sore from the blow. On the same day, the physically disabled kids decided that I would be fun to climb and drool on. They too were paining me and pulling my skirt off. It seems they are learning from you Taylor;) Remember the WM parking lot? An older girl told me a bit of her story. I really don't what to say to her. She was moved from her old orphanage and her twin sister because she was sexually abused by the boys who stayed there. She is very negative and complains alot about everything. I have been trying to get her to tell me one positive thing about her day.
29 Dec: This was the fatefull day I met momma Jeanette and daddy Charles at the post office. I have to say that it felt really good to glare with all my might at someone. I feel bad about how good it made me feel now though. Especially with my renewed commitment to doing the little things that make people happy.
30 Dec: Mamma Phyllis and I took the toddlers to her house and she kerneled dry corn for about two hours. They take the dried kernels to market and grind it. Then they use it to make Banku or Kenke. I have a huge blister on my thumb from the ordeal but there was something so amazing about sitting on the floor with several kids and women in a circle around a giant bowl of kernels. I would race with the women to see who could kernel faster. I won once but I think I just got lucky. I have been chatting more and more with some boys my age from the Orphanage. The girls are really stand offish so I haven't talked with them as much. Joseph, the rasta man, is going to film school. His mother left him when he was five while his father was in jail. He still sees his father everyonce in awhile. He remembers his mother, but he hasn't forgiven her. We hypothised about what he would do if he ever met his mother again. I am giving him my burned CDs of Jesus Christ Superstar, Abby Road, Led Zeppelin 4 and Santana.
31 Dec: I met mom and dad for dinner. They took me out to a very nice restaurant/hotel. I had pineapple juice, roasted peanuts and vegetable curry. I was in heavan. Mom and dad have a lot of great stories about their five years in Ghana. It is amazing what a different experience I am having from them though. They live in a nice house, running water, air conditioning, car, security, maid and driver. They shop at super markets and eat at restaurants that cater to expats. I take tro tros, bargain, walk, bucket, carry water, hand wash my clothes and put up with a lot of shit from Ghanaian men. They loved my story about selling sandwhichs and I loved their story about how they became tro tro drivers for a day with a bunch of wide eyed black people in awe of the white person driving them around. They had the hotel find someone to drive me home and it just happened to be a silver BMW convertable. I was, to say the least, amazed and enjoyed speeding down the road with the wind full in my face. Mom and dad call me their daughter. What an amazing thing it was to meet these people.
1 Jan: The younger boys are in love with me. Honestly, I am in love with them. They just warm my heart and I love to tickle them, wrestle with them and chase them around. They love to climb on me, lay on me, hug me, tickle me, read to me and listen to me read.
2 Jan: I cleaned my room and washed clothes. Dust is everywhere all the time. I don't know why I bother. I stopped wearing deoderant. It's just not worth it. I brought toffees to the kids that had read to me the day before. Doreen, the complainer, is reading quite well, as is Eben. The others, read really easy books that I think are memorized but at least they are thumbing through the pages. The toffee made a lot of kids promise to read to me today and they all stormed into the library to find books. Then they piled on top of me and around me and we read and read and read. I went to a football match between OA and another orphange and met three more obrunis! They invited me to an international church. I will try to go but I'm a bit hairy on the location.
3 Jan: I got a package from Hillary! Thank you. You are the sweetest. Cecilia popped me popcorn and I gave it to some kids on the roadside who almost bowled me over in enthusiasm. In the same spirit, I gave an orange to a couple of girls who passed through my yard. I gave some more popcorn to a really young mate on a tro tro and took a couple older girls to my house and then to an internet cafe to set up email accounts. Fatima and Agnes went through all my pictures and even though they are coming back with me in my suitcase, they are going to confiscate several pictures. They think that Katy is beautiful and that Mum looks very young. They know how to crochet so they were fascinated by my knitting needles and I let them work on my latest project. Then I headed to mom and dads for dinner. They were having company over and had prepared an authentic american picnic complete with hamburgers, fruit jello, pringles, rice crispy treats, baked beans, franks and guacamole. I ate way too much. I think I must have eaten an entire can of pringles. It was really funny to sit around the dinner table with this Ghanaian family because they didn't understand the things that mom and dad and I thought were funny. For example, the tradition of passing fruit cake from family member to family member year after year. They also didn't think the tro tro driving or the sandwich selling was that amusing. It is really nice to have this couple here and in the flesh who understands. They left for South Africa and wont be back until the 22 :(
Jan 4: School resumed but no one showed up. So I'm here in a cafe typing away.

I am very sad that when I get home, no one will truely understand. Some of you will be able to imagine. Julie will a little from her Nepal experience and Hillary may a little from her Mexico trip and Sarita may from her time in Ghana previously but I will forever have something in myself that I won't be able to express no matter how hard I try and that makes me very sad. I really wish that there was someone whe could read my brain by touching my head and receive everything, smells, sounds, the heat, the children, the rollercoaster, the poverty and the generousity. How can people here give me so much? Me, a white person who will always have more then them? How can I bargain and barter and ask for change back when the it's only a difference of pennies? How can I ignore the people who shout at me? They only want recognition from a white person. I don't know what I've become.

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