Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Travels to the Edge - Ghana Style -1

We arrived in Ghana over a week ago, but technology did not arrive with us. Today is a good day, and time is on our side (which is usually the case in Ghana).

Our journey was very long, but uneventful. My 9 students met us at Detroit Metro airport, where the journey began. Detroit to Atlanta was a quiet leg, and one which built our excitement. When we landed and made our way to the gate which would take us directly to Accra, the capital, we knew we were going to a strange and distant land. This leg of the journey would be extremely multi-cultural, for which we were ready (almost).

One really unique thing to us was the ability to track our flight on a screen mounted on the seat in front of us. We watched the journey, changed screens to check our altitude, flight speed, etc., and even had the chance to watch a movie or two. I finally got a look at Prince of Persia, but couldn't concentrate enough to watch the entire thing:).

From Atlanta to Accra was approximately 11 hours, a long, exhausting, and mostly sleepless flight for us. A few students managed to curl up and sleep - the benefit to having an overnight flight is the dark. We were fed meals, got pillows and blankets - and if we hadn't seen the 1st class section we might never have known how good it could really be.

During the flight the students were in one area of the plane, but not necessarily sitting together. This was a good thing, as they could mix with those from the area. Many discussions ensued surrounding what Africa/Ghana was like, what to see and do, etc.

Finally we arrived - landing smoothly in the capital city of Ghana. Greeted with the typical expression: Akwaaba (welcome).
Customs went smoothly, well, almost. My students and husband went through with no problem at all. When it came to my turn, for some reason the person checking me through decided I should stay for only 30 days, which she stamped onto my visa. When I joined the others I looked at my husband and suggested he pay close attention to how to do student teacher observations and evaluations, and electronic portfolios, etc.....as he'd be finishing up my assignment for me! Fortunately I am told I will just have to apply for an extension, which shouldn't be a problem. I love the word "shouldn't," do you?

A bus from the village in Tema was waiting, with a helpful driver, and air conditioning. The minute we were off the plane we knew were in Africa! A ride to the village, and a warm welcome helped round out the beginning of our fantastic adventure.

Our house awaits...again, with air conditioning, ceiling fans, bed, bath, living and dining areas, a back yard with coconut trees and exotic birds.....

...and a welcoming front porch from which to do my work and watch the children at play. Come and sit awhile and I'll tell you all about our journeys around Africa, and in the classrooms.

Akwaaba - welcome.

1 comment:

marlea said...

How exciting Sandy. Will be watching for more posts. Beautiful. God be with you my friend. You and your students will continue to be in my thoughts and prayers! :) - Marlea