Tuesday, August 17, 2010

wait, am I actually in Africa?!?

Today we had more orientation stuff. One of our professors, Nat Amarteifo, (who used to be the mayor of ghana!) told us a bit about the history of Ghana and then we went on a bus tour of the city. They took us through Jamestown, which is one of the poorer parts of the region, and it was really sad to see. The houses were literally one room boxes made out concrete with tin roofs held in place with rocks. There were people bathing in dirty water holes and emaciated goats everywhere! Definitely not at all like the area we are staying in, and seeing this way of life made me appreciate everything I have back in New York so much. Regardless of their horrible living situations, all the Ghanaians waved and smiled at us through the bus window. They would crowd around the bus and try and get us to buy stuff from them by shoving like, bracelets and crazy sculptures in our face and grabbing our hands. I’m thinking it wont be as intense when I am no longer traveling with 42 other (mostly) white American kids...

After the tour we went for lunch to this place called Frankies and they had hummus!!! Which they spell it "homos" (and when I told this to my mom via email, she wrote back asking if they had “lesbos” on the menus as well. haha mom!) I freaked out! It tasted so good and I was so happy to have protein/ anything besides white rice!

Dinner was at Sunshine Salads in Osu (they have a branch in Lebone which I’m sure I will try very soon as our meal plan covers dinner there on Tuesdays and Thursdays). I had salad (!!) a noodle dish, yellow rice and this amazing spicy, mushroom-veggie-gravy-saucy stuff. They also brought out some veggie somosas that they has left over and it was the most amazing somosa everrrr! Hints of cinnamon and cumin mmmhhmm mmm! I think I’m going to try and steer clear of deep fried foods from now on though. I feel like all the meals I have eaten here are really heavy and we’ve been shuttled around on a bus everyday. Not walking + heavy foods = blaahh.

organic brown rice!! yeee :)

After we finished eating, my friend Kate and I ventured out to find some groceries to bring back to the house. The school stocked our kitchen with a few basics like toast, crackers, and lots of juice J but I realized that because it is going to be a challenge to find protein in many of my meals (why does everyone think that vegans only eat vegetables!?!) I bought a banana (plantain? I shall find out…) at a stand for 40 pesewas. We also checked out Qwick Pik, pretty much a mini mart, and I found organic brown rice for c4.40**sigh of relief** There is no official certification symbol anywhere on the label, so I’m gonna have to trust Kiki’s on this one…I’m going to chop up my banana (or plantain, still dunno) and freeze is so I can make a hemp protein smoothie tomorrow!! Yummm. I’m so exhausted and have to wake up at 7am, yet again.

P.S. For my class The Art of Travel I have to write a blog post on varying aspects of my semester abroad in Ghana. You can read those entries over here.

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