A Travellerspoint blog

Our Christmas World

semi-overcast 8 °C

We are now in London and suffering culture and climate shock.
Every year since 1947 the people of Norway have gifted the British their finest tree as a thank-you for liberating them from the Nazis and we joined the throng in Trafalgar Square to witness the lighting ceremony. It was a moving, if slightly chilly, event.
Since leaving Ghana the temperature has dropped nearly 30 Celsius and we have been catapaulted 300 years into the future. Gone are the mud huts and the shoeless children. Gone too are the filthy streets, the smashed and abandoned vehicles and the frighteningly overloaded taxis…
But it has been a memorable journey. In years to come we will be still be saying, “Remember when the restaurant fell into the sea,” and “Remember the barrow boys of Sunyani waiting to pick up a fare.” Here they are known as ‘Yorkshire taxis’…
And remember when a scary warthog crept up behind you and I told you it was probably just a friendly Ghanaian guinea pig…
And what about the leaning Yam Barn of Larbanga donated by some well-meaning aid agency…
Or the very latest Ghanaian helicopter that we wanted to buy for the Canadian military because our government can’t afford to replace the sixty year old Sea Kings…
And then, in Morocco, there was this man who couldn’t see his donkey for the wood…
And the man who couldn’t see his goats for the tree…
Yes - It has certainly been a memorable journey for us and we hope, dear blog reader, that you have enjoyed the ride. Christmas is coming and it will soon be time for us to head home, but first a big thank you to everyone who made our journey possible and enjoyable.
Our thoughts are particularly with the Ghanaians. The country has changed little since Sheila first visited 40 years ago. There is electricity in larger conurbations, though many people can't afford more than a few lights, and when a development worker we met asked one of the rural chiefs what his people most needed he said they wanted electricity so they could watch English football on television..
Offshore oil is flowing in Ghana, and some people are getting rich. However, increased wealth leads to increased consumption which in turn leads to increased garbage. An international health advisor summed up life in Ghana to us as, “A documentary warning what the rest of the world will look like if we don’t drastically change our ways”.
So we left Ghana with a certain sadness because we have so many questions and absolutely no answers. Nevertheless, we wish them and you a very Merry Christmas from us and from Santa in Accra…
P.S. Don’t worry about the restaurant that fell into the sea – by the time we left the resort crews were already at work rebuilding it.

Posted by Hawkson 03:04 Archived in England

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Enjoy your Ghanaian memories and have a very Merry Canadian Christmas!

by Abigail Gossage

Looking forward to seeing you Sheila at lunch with the book club..sorry to tell you there is snow on my front lawn and its bloody cold here this morning.
love Jean

by Jean McLaren

Keep those warm winter clothes on. It's minus four this morning on Gabriola and when the wind comes up later it will be minus eleven. Beautiful sunshine, though.

by R and B

Hi from Winterpeg, where the windchill is going to be -30 this afternoon! Ah well, it is bright with the sun sparkling off the (lots) of snow. Quite a change from the B.C. winters we had become accustomed to..still, well worth it to be here with family. Wishing you both (and all the other blog followers) a very Merry Christmas..safe remainder of your journey home. It's been a memorable voyage..hugs,Sharron

by Sharron

Thank you for a look into Ghana and your wonderful photos and stories. Welcome home.

by Sue Fitzwilson

Some stunning images and contrasts here - thank you for sharing these with us. Love the goats in the tree but feel for the donkey beneath the planks. Look forward to seeing you soon.

by Janet

What a machine. A promising addition to Helijet's fleet. Love the multiple Santas. Makes belief even more of a childhood challenge. Glad to see no human beings sweltering inside.

Clever how you hid the ladder in the goat shot.

Look forward to seeing you back.

by Tom

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