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Obroni…

I promised myself I would not make long entries.  Sorry!

Time flies.  We have been in Ghana for over a month now and continue to live with Carlos’ friends.  Our 40’ container arrived at the end of last week, so now the process (which can be harrowing) of getting it out of the harbor and clearing Ghana customs ensues.  Wish us luck!

Our neighborhood is located outside of the capital of Accra.  The journey can take upwards of an hour depending on the traffic and traffic is horrendous!

On the motorway heading towards Mataheko.

Toll booth with food sellers.

Traffic!

I fill my days hanging out with Amerley and Palmer.  I am not quite sure what we do in between breakfast, lunch and dinner; washing dishes; changing diapers; hanging the clothes out to dry; playing outside; taking a nap and bathing.  Before I know it, another day has passed.

Amerley carrying something on her head in true African style!!

Fun!

Night night!

So I don’t go incredibly stir crazy and I have some form of adult social interaction; each day we walk outside of our housing community.  Basically, there is one paved road with food stands and a local grocery store.  Patience and Mary, the security guards at the entrance to the gate are teaching me Twi, which I practice on Elizabeth who sells roasted plantains and roasted corn, the ladies who sell other fruits and vegetables and Naa who owns the local grocery store.  Ghanaians love it when I attempt to speak Twi!  It doesn’t always go as planned, but I am trying!  We often buy bananas, brown bread (wheat bread), biscuits (cookies) or ice cream (frozen individual sachets of vanilla, chocolate or strawberry ice cream).

Gate leading to our neighborhood.

Patience who teaches me Twi!

The food stalls right outside of the gate.

The paved road outside of the gate.

The local grocery!

Outside of our neighborhood. Cows take no notice at honking cars!

The neighborhood we live in is made up of about 200 homes.  Most of the homes are under construction so throughout the day there are masons, electricians, painters, plumbers, cabinet makers, gardeners, you name it.  I practice my Twi with the workers as well.  I am called Obroni (white person), which is totally acceptable and my retort, which always gets a laugh is Obibini (black person).  The neighborhood is mostly Ghanaians, although one afternoon I saw two Caucasians leaving in a car so I may not be the only one!  I recently learned one of the houses has a swimming pool via Google Earth!  Now, aside from scaling the tall wall, I need to find out how I can access this pool!

The neighborhood.

The neighborhood.

Busy at work!

I am currently teaching three online classes right now.  It is challenging, but I am managing.  Carlos has three universities that have said they want to hire him, but everything is a process and takes time.  Ah, the slow pace of life… when you want it to speed up, it doesn’t!  We are hopeful.  He is supposed to begin teaching classes next week!

By Friday I am feeling the need to go somewhere… anywhere!  We usually hit  the Accra Mall for a mocha.  No Starbucks, but it works!  There is a food court, a Puma and Birkenstock store, furniture stores, gift shops, large grocery stores, etc.  Last Saturday, Ludicrus (the singer) was at the mall!

The Accra Mall!

Inside the Accra Mall.

Carlos, Amerley and Palmer (Nii Okai) drinking hot cocoa at the mall!

Kissy Kissy!

Puma Store!

Birkenstock Store.

This past Saturday we went to PramPram Beach, which has a small restaurant.  It is a 20 minute drive from our house!

PramPram Beach.

PramPram Beach.

Palmer is so easy going, happy and social although he gets into everything now!  He has two more teeth coming in, adding to his four.  Aside from momma and papa; he now says wawa (water), Naa (Naa Amerley), hot and boo (breast milk).  He roars like a lion and barks like a dog.

Amerley is as feisty as ever!  I wonder how much is the terrible-three stage, trying to cope with her new life in Ghana or a mixture of both.  Ghana has brought about MANY changes to name a few; there isn’t a Trader Joe’s, there is no Jamba Juice at the mall, the electricity is intermittent, our water supply was out for more than four days, there are no play dates and frequent trips to the library, her toys haven’t arrived yet, its hot and muggy, she drinks hot cocoa blended with bitter malaria prophylaxis and she doesn’t get to see her Nana.  You are probably thinking this is a no-brainer, but wait… I think I forget to question this transition because for me life in Ghana is simple and relocating has been what I have always yearned for.  Yeah, things don’t work as efficiently as in the US… so the lights go out, we have to take bucket baths, there is no concept of customer service, time is of little essence and hopping across town in traffic isn’t an option; but life is uncomplicated, easy, peaceful and relationships take precedence.  What is not to love?

Gotta love it!

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22 responses to “Obroni…

  1. Roger Martin ⋅

    Beth

    Nice pictures. Great blog. Thanks for keeping us posted.

    Dr. Roger W. Martin
    Associate Professor of Business

    Faculty Chair 2012-2014
    Warner Pacific College

    Humility, Service, and Professional Will

  2. Antoinette ⋅

    A mall in Accra!!

  3. Elisha Alcantara ⋅

    Thanks so much for sharing your journey. Simply amazing to me. You all look great! 🙂

  4. Becca ⋅

    Thanks for the photos & updates Beth…keep them coming! It sounds neat to have a slower pace of life!

    Elias just turned 1 on Thursday & is one BUSY & talkative little boy! Aubrey has enjoyed her 1st month of 3 morning a week Pre-K at Trinity Lutheran. They sure are growing up fast!

  5. Beth ⋅

    I am envious of your lifestyle. You all look amazing. Thanks for the invite to share.

  6. Laurel Sapp ⋅

    Beth,

    Love it! Thank you for Sharing! Miss you all!! So glad you get this opportunity! God Bless!

    Love ya,

    Laurel

  7. Martin Tatarkla ⋅

    Im with Antoinette… A Mall! My how things have changed. Loved the pictures . The children seem to be settling in nicely. And of course nice to see a picture of Carlos… (greetings) and you (more greetings).
    Wow what a change that must be….
    Congrats,
    Peace,
    Martin

  8. Jane Faulkner ⋅

    Accra Mall looks like Jantzen Beach. Jamba juice has too much sugar. Sorry about no Trader Joe. Love your kids and your slow life. We miss you. Jane

  9. Mary ⋅

    So happy for you, Beth! This looks awesome.

  10. Pat Shaw ⋅

    Beth, you are such a good writer. I love your descriptions, and your honest, authentic self.
    Hugs,
    Pat

  11. Scheer, Melody ⋅

    Don’t ever thing you have to keep things short in your blog…….I love reading about your adventures. Miss you. Give the kids a kiss for me.

    Love, Melody

    Public Health: Always working for a safer and healthier Clark County

    Melody Scheer, BS, RDH | Health Systems Program Coordinator
    Clark County Public Health

    http://www.clark.wa.gov/public-health

    Find us on Facebook

    Follow us on Twitter

    Center for Community Health | 1601 E Fourth Plain Blvd
    P.O. Box 9825 | Vancouver, WA 98666-8825
    Tel: 360-397-3000 ext. 7278
    melody.scheer@clark.wa.gov

  12. Colleen Castleberry ⋅

    So good to hear from you! It does sound like a good life! Good luck with getting your home all set up!

  13. wlin123@comcast.net ⋅

    Thank you SO MUCH for sharing about your life in Ghana! It sounds amazing and you sound like you are adapting so well.

    Miss you, Carlos, Amerley and Palmer very much!!!!

    Dr. Wendy

  14. Lori ⋅

    So happy for you that you made the move! I love reading about your adventures so far and seeing the pics. I can’t believe how big the kids have gotten! Love, Lori

  15. Oh Beth, it looks like a dream come true. What a happy life, You will continue to love it. I so enjoy your news, keep it coming with the awesome pictures. xxxooo

  16. kchelme@hotmail.com ⋅

    Great job on the blog! I love reading it. It brings me back to my Amedzofe/peace corps days. Let me know if there’s anything you need me to send ok. Happy to do so. You all sound like you’re doing well..I’m sad though that your Obibrunis don’t get to see their Nana!!! I’m SURE she’s missing them like crazy. Thinking of you guys all the time! K.

    From my HTC Sensation 4G on T-Mobile. The first nationwide 4G network

  17. Marj Simons ⋅

    So glad to get this update, with pics too!!! Great job sharing about your new adventure. Love to all

  18. Thanks for sharing a snapshot of your new life in Ghana, helps us to know where you live and how you’re all doing. You are in our daily thoughts and prayers. Jay and Jan

  19. Paresa, Bill (DSHS/CA) ⋅

    Hi, Beth. This is amazing, and I was so sorry I could not see you off. I definitely want to continue being informed about the Okantey clan in Ghana. Is there a way for you to register me for updates using my personal email address? It is billparesa@comcast.net. I wish all of you all the best. You will always have a job waiting for you here if you decide you need a Vancouver Children’s Services fix. Godspeed. Bill

  20. lee Nusich ⋅

    Thanks for keeping in touch, Beth. Your new home is beautiful and I’m sure you will be happy to move in and get settled. I’m glad to hear that life is going so well for all of you. All the best. Lee

  21. Anne Johnston ⋅

    Thanks for keeping us updated! Glad things are going well!

  22. Taunya ⋅

    It’s SOOOO great to see you and Carlos fullfilling your dreams. Your babies look beautiful and happy and I am so happy for you and your family. BTW–I got married 3 weeks ago, am leaving State employ and moving to Oregon! Wow!!

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