Thursday, June 26, 2008

The walk home

The trek home from the orphanage to Teshie-Tibebiano (home) is always an interesting adventure, and yesterday was no exception. Megan, Jessica and I were sitting in the tro tro during rush hour traffic (which sucks majorly here!) And we decided we didn't want to wait in the tro tro and we were just going to walk home. We were walking along, trying to dodge the mud and puddles that are ever present. As we were walking we met a Ghanaian woman named Happy. She started talking to us about where we are from and what we are doing and how great the work we are doing here is. She told us about her aspirations to visit her relatives in the Bronx but she said she didn't have the heart to stay there. She told us about her husband who is a writer and a preacher. We reached her house and we were preparing to say our goodbyes when she said that we needed to come into her house and meet her husband (John) and her 3 kids. So we went into her house which was a 10 x 10 foot room with a small couch, 1 foam mattress which sleeps the whole family and a small desk where John does his writing. We sat on the couch and met the whole family. They were so nice and generous, one of the little girls even started wiping the mud off of Megans feet. We talked with them for about 30 minutes about the books John has written and the volunteer work we are involved in here in Ghana. John was so articulate and wise despite the fact that he has no college education. Before we left, John read us a verse from the bible and prayed with us. His prayer was so sincere and all about us and our work and asking for great success with the children and asking that our hearts can truly be opened for these kids, it was a really great prayer. As we were getting ready to leave, Happy brought us pineapple. I don't usually eat pineapple in the states, but here it is absolutely amazing! It is so sweet and juicy and just soo good! So we took a peice of pineapple and Happy and her daughter kept telling us to take more and more and more. I was so taken aback by their generosity and sincere love for us. I had brought a couple of small rubber balls with me to the orphanage and had them in my bag still. I pumped up the balls and gave them to the kids. They were so thrilled! I'm sure I caused a headache for John and Happy, but the children loved them. Happy took down our phone number and said she would call us to go to church with them and then have fufu and banku. I really hope that she calls so that we can get together with these amazing people again and try some local food :S. I will definitely be bringing some crayons and paper for the kids next time we go down there.

Some pics

I couldn't really get the pictures to load onto this blog but I got it to work of Facebook so you can click on this link and see the pictures I have uploaded so far.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

2nd day at the orphanage

Today is my second day working in the Osu orphanage. I am working with the toddlers and there are about 33 of them all together. These kids' basic needs are taken care of ie. food, clothing, and shelter. But they do not get enough love. The aunties yell and beat them when they are bad. My job is to love, and I am trying my hardest. Yesterday I was all loved out and kind of discouraged but I am definitely not the first to feel this way. Today has been better and I am starting to learn how to help and love these kids. It is so different than interacting with the kids at home. These kids don't speak much English and they all starve for constant attention. I have a couple of favorites, Kofi is a sweetheart who loves nothing more than simply sitting on your lap as the chaos goes on around him. Kelvin is another one, he is all smiles and kind of mischevious. In the last couple of days the question "Why?!" has popped in my head a lot. Why was I born in America to 2 loving parents? Why do you have to live in Ghana for 2 years to adopt? Why did these children get left? Why do Ama and Kelvin rock themselves to sleep? (I've heard that this is a dangerous behavior.....any answers?) Why why why?! I love the kids already and I am prepared to give them all my love. I miss everyone at home and love you all! I forgot my camera today but I will definitely get at least 1 or 2 pictures uploaded. I got some good ones from when a couple of us took 5 of the orphans to the beach. CUTE are they!

Peace and love

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

I'm here!

After a 14 hour plane ride I finally made it to Accra, Ghana. The hostel is located in a suburb called Teshie-camp 2. It is very nice but very poor compared to western standards. There is no running water, water is delivered each week. Right now I am just doing the lanuage and culture program and learing lots about Ghana and Twi prounounced (Chwi) I learned that my name in Twi is Kokyo pronounced Kojo. It is very interesting to learn about the different customs of the Ghanaians. You greet everyone you meet with good morning, good afternoon, or goodnight. And when conversing with another human you only use your right hand. Yesterday I gave a woman 1 cedi (equal to 1 dollar) with my left hand and I got in trouble :S Yesterday we visited the tourist market where there are a lot of different souveniers that you can buy. It was a very crazy experience! The second we stepped out of the tro tro (bus) there were people trying to sell us masks and sunglasses and braclets etc. Walking through the market, everyone would try to get you to come into their shop and buy something there. One girl called me her boyfriend! haha so now I have a Ghanaian girlfriend woot woot I can't wait to start in the orphanage on Monday. It should be a very eye opening experience. A lot of the volunteers here are really really sick. I hope I don't catch anything! I am hopefully going to be able to post some pictures when I get to the Osu internet cafe, the other volunteers say it is faster and the computers are newer. Ghana is amazing! The people are super nice the kids are hillarious. Obruni means white man so you hear that a lot as you walk past. The kids like to feel my head and touch my skin. Hopefully I can blog more later. My time here at the internet cafe has run out.