Saturday, 3 October 2015

Maaha (Good Afternoon in Twi)

Another great week in Ghana :)

Since the last blog we had the pleasure of meeting our new niece Beatrix May over skype and showing Tom, Jodi and Franz where we live. They also got to meet a student from my class, Zikpi Samuel, who was rather overwhelmed by the whole thing (not surprising given that he'd probably never have seen people on a video link before!). That same weekend we finished off our tour of the village of Abenta, which I enjoyed a lot more after knowing a bit more Twi and it feeling like home.
The view from another part of the village. From left to right: Emmanuel, Patrick, Joel and I

Me doing the very important thing of nesting by sweeping our hut the Ghanaian way - no dustpan needed :)

School has been both a challenge and a joy. We both get on really well with the teachers that we are working with and will miss them and our students when we switch on Monday. It has been so difficult to see how hard the teachers' jobs are made by lack of resources and pay (my teacher hasn't paid for a whole year - no wonder moral is bad). It didn't take long for my class to get used to my way of doing things (i.e. not using the cane) but the language barrier is still challenging. The students English isn't great so I think that will be one our focuses whilst we are here.
Me getting some marking done outside our hut.

The children in Abenta are so lovely and always up for fun activities. I have taken it upon myself, as the only female volunteer at this time, to get girls involved in football and table tennis (the boys usually push them out or they assume they are not allowed to play). On a similar note, it is refreshing to see that girls and boys are equal in the classroom, however, the attendance of boys is much more for various reasons.
Joel and Zikpi Samuel teaching myself and others how to header a ball.
Martin initiating a race where there must be on there bellies the whole time - I see some cheating.

This Thursday we were so happy to be invited to the Mensah family's house (Aikins' mum's house) for a meal. It was the best meal we had all had whilst in Ghana. Janet is an incredible cook and it was nice to have a rest from cooking ourselves. Martin and I were a little disappointed that we weren't the same food as the family (as we like to be immersed in the culture) but rice and red curry is still Ghanaian. We ate with knives and forks - cheating. The village we were in was Gbloo Kofi which is where Village by Village has just left. You could tell how much better the childrens' English was. Aikins' little sister Emmanuela was telling me, whilst doing a video for 'Team Emmanuela' - ex-volunteers who donate to V by V, how sad she is that the volunteers aren't there anymore :(
I had my first taste of sugar cane - unfortunately not a fan :( Martin is though.
Martin with Aikins and his daughter Shena.

We are currently in Korifidua for a weekend break. Highlights so far consist of a toilet seat, washing my hair without dettol in the water meaning I can wear it down and air con :) The hotel is nice and I will spending most of my time by the pool I hope :) Martin was very happy having meat last night (chicken and chips) - he has been craving it a lot.
Our long drop toilets back at Abenta (home). I was struggling to flush the toilet in our hotel room, it was broken, and so turned to Martin and said 'This wouldn't happen in Abenta' - that is when you know it is home. I'm missing it already - looking forward to being back on Sunday.
The view from our hotel room in Korifidua.

We have a new volunteer as of yesterday called Hermione and as of Sunday we will have Scott. Looking forward to getting to know them both.

Hope you are all well. Miss you x

Over and out.

Liz (and Martin)

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