Trip Start Apr 27, 2009
26Trip End Aug 11, 2009
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I had been met at the airport by representatives from the organization with whom I will be volunteering for the next two months. Together, we drove out of Accra and towards Ho, a town two and a half hours away where the organization is headquartered. Along the way, I was passed a cooler filled with pouffy plastic pouches, like the air-filled pouches that stabilize your purchase in an Amazon shipment. I didn't understand. Was there something in the cooler surrounded by these pouches I was supposed to take? Were they there to keep it cold? I started digging a little
In Ghana, the government is quite concerned that cars not go racing through towns along the main highway at break-neck speeds. To discourage such acts, they have constructed spped bumps in these towns. Excessive numbers of brutally bumpy speed bumps. It doesn't matter how slowly you go over these suckers, they'll still knock your car out of alignment. We hit the first set of these just as I was dozing off. So much for that plan. The bumps come in sets of three or four at the entrance and exit to each village and a strategic locations through the middle of it. By the end of the trip, I had a headache.
Ghana also ascribes to the West African Military Checkpoint Policy. The purpose of these checkpoints remains a mystery to me. I only know of their potential to increase corruption as officials can elicit bribes from passing vehicles. Nonetheless, at each checkpoint (there were 7 or 8 of them), we stopped, the requisite flashlights were shone into the truck to show no funny business going on, and we were given leave to carry on.
Finally, we arrived in Ho at the organization's house. I was introduced to the manager and the other volunteer in residence and just barely managed to make the appropriate polite responses before crashing into my bed and a dreamless sleep.