Well, it’s not really, but I thought it funny the only time I have seen turkeys in Ghana has been this week at the post office, where I went to collect and send Christmas presents, that I saw this gaggle.
Outwardly, Christmas here isn’t ‘done’ like in Australia or Europe, or North America. The only decorations I have seen are in the larger stores or fancier hotels. The latter are draped in the swathes of [green and red] fabric which are such a fixture of Ghanaian decoration. But, on closer inspection, the traffic over the last few days is starting to get (even more!) intense, people are on the move. And now that the elections are all but over (we are still waiting for the legal contest form the NPP, and the swearing in of the new president, scheduled for 7 January), Christmas is, of course, on people’s minds. On the radio hip-life has been replaced by saccharine Christmas carols. Man, I’m not a fan. While grocery shopping I made a comment along these lines to the shop girl, and she assured me it was ‘because I am not happy in my heart’. I assured her, not to worry, I was.
Here is a truck from Burkina Faso, travelling to Accra. The truck is full of cattle off to (Christmas?) slaughter, the cane box atop is full of guinea fowl (again off to Christmas slaughter?) and a huge group of guys, perched on top. I seriously hope they don’t fall into the truck of heaving meat and sharp horns.
The weather is changing too. While we were expecting Harmattan by now, when the hot winds from the north bring the sand of the Sahara to cover everything in red dust; it has not yet arrived. True is it getting hotter (is it possible?), and the mornings are now shrouded in thick, white fog. The fog seems to herald bright, hot days. I spent my first ten months in Ghana, nary seeing a star. After a lifetime of romantic ideals of the night sky in Africa, living at the equator means almost permanent cloud cover. But lately, the sky has been a welcome blue, broken by large grey cumulus, and bands of white alto stratus. And come nightfall, a lovely, but brief sunset.
The end of the year is always a time of reflection. It has been an extraordinary year – challenging, eye-opening, adventurous, at times charming, at times tedious. Extra ordinary in many respects really. We have grown as individuals, and probably more importantly, as a family.
We are off for a few weeks holiday. And with the end of the year, a big birthday looming for me, and soon after, a year since we arrived in Ghana, there will be plenty of time for more reflection. Should I have an ephiphany about any of it, I’ll let you know.
But in the meantime, we wish you all a very happy Christmas, and a great 2013.