Friday, January 15, 2010

Spiders are my Friend, Spiders are my Friend…

Anna and I moved into our flat at the Wa School for the Blind on Wednesday. Now when I was 11 years old saying I wanted to go to Africa I really did not realize all of what that entailed. After researching and talking to other people lives in Africa I realized I should start praying for a toilet and at least a well to get water from. I knew that electricity and running water is a great thing to have but for me not so much of a necessity. Sure they are great to have but I knew that the places I was wanted to go probably would not have these things.

Well, God answered my prayers! I have a great flat with a toilet and the well is right next door. It is a little place but it is great. It has a little sitting area with a love seat, desk, chair, and we got a refrigerator. There is a bedroom that has two beds and we have a toilet, shower and sink room. Now we do not have running water but the well is very close and Alice (the school helper) comes every day to help us carry buckets of water to our flat. She carries them on her head but as for Anna and I, we help each other carry one between the two of us. (Water is heavy.) There is electricity but it is expensive so we use the ceiling fan at night when we sleep and use candle light after 6:30pm because by this time it is pitch black outside.

Dinners with Anna can be very are romantic  Often we eat peanut butter and jelly with an apple. We will also have tuna salad with unions, tomatoes and hopefully soon the cucumbers will be good at the market. Once Wa is able to get some gas we will buy a small eye, or stove, so we can cook rice and will be able to have more food. The bread here is really good. Ghanaians really like starch so when you are asked what your favorite meal is, you say rice or potatoes and then the meat (chicken, but sometimes beef) or vegetable.

It is very hot here and very dry. It feels over 100 during the day in the sun. When you step in the shade it gets much cooler and it is bearable to be outside. You do not feel your sweat because it evaporates right away, due to the fact that it is so dry. Around 2 in the afternoon I bet I could crack open an egg and fry it on the cement or I could boil some water for hot chocolate but as much as I love hot chocolate I really would rather drink some water.

They do have popcorn at the market but no kettle corn. I brought some different seasons to put on the popcorn so when we pop it we can make it butter or cheese. But they do have veggies, jewelry and lab kabobs at the market.

As for the wild life in Wa… Well have you every read the book Charlotte’s Web? It is like that but with no fences. Goats, sheep, chickens, some ducks, a few pigs, spiders, oh and lizards (I know there are no lizards in the book but there are some here) all just roam around all over the place. The way you can tell the goats and sheep apart is by the tail. Goats’ tails are up and sheep tails are down and pigs’ tails do not curl here, they are straight. Yeah Wa is pretty much a large farm.

A pig family lives right outside out flat; Anna and I named the little one Wilber. We have a pet lizard in our room that we named Evelyn. There are a lot of Daddy Long Leg Spiders that live with us but we call them Charlotte to make them a little less intimidating. We keep them around because they will eat all the bad bugs that we really do not want in our flat. Spiders are my friend, Spiders are my friend, Charlotte is my friend; I have to remind myself sometimes…

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Market Day in Wa

Tuesday is Market Day in Wa. This is when everyone brings everything and all set up shop in one part of the town. For those of you who have been to the Saturday Market in Alaska it is kind of like that but way more people. I have tried to upload a picture but the Internet will now allow it. There were people, goats, sheep and colors everywhere; any thing you can find.

Anna and I went shopping for food and supplies for out new flat. We moved somethings in today. It was very exciting.

I may not be able to blog for a few days but will come back with some stories. Thank you to all who have been reading.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Meeting the Headmaster

Today I was able to meet the Headmaster (principal of the Wa School for the Blind). He was very nice but a little hard to understand at times; although I am sure I am hard to understand with my Chicago accent. One thing the Headmaster asked for was a lap top for him to use at the school. I was able to find a used one and give it to him. He was so please and very excited.

The students will be coming back from break tomorrow and moving back to the dorms. Anna and I will also be moving a flat that is at the school tomorrow as well. Because it is dry season here we do not have running water at the school but we do have a toilet. A toilet is all I really asked for so that is great. The helper at the school is named Alice and she said she would come each morning and help us get water from the well. I am excited to meet the students!

Mr. Schanz: You would not like it here. There are a lot of snakes! Oh and I forgot to mention that we were very lucky there was a recent forest fire when we went camping because if there was not there would had been many snacks to watch out for. Glad you are following my blog. Say hi to everyone for me.

And for all who are wondering: I did dance at the Church. It was so much fun!

Lesson of the day:
There is a difference between the sign that says women urinate and the sign that says women toilet. Ladies, coming from experience, you want to go in the door that says women toilet. Oh and mom thanks for throwing in the extra TP, used it on the bus ride.

Spelling Errors

Just wanted to say sorry for the spelling errors.

I am typing very fast and often do not have time to spell check before the internet goes out.

Please ignore the spelling mistakes and keep reading.


Sunday, January 10, 2010


Today we went to two different church service.

Wa is in the 10/40 window which means there are not as many Christians or missionaries here. 90% of people in Wa are Muluim.

The first church we went to met under a tree and had about 10-15 members and many children. It was in a village and John (the missionary family I am staying with) spoke about baptism. The members had really good quesitons about it and John hopes to come back soon and hold a baptism.

The second church was in a cement and stucko/mud building. The men and women were seperated to sides and between the congregation and the drums there was a big opening for people to dance. They did an African running man; you lean forward and kind of run with straighter legs, with your arms in from of you kind of pushing a car horn. First the kids went up, then the women, men, then the white people and then we all did it together. John brought communion but in order to take communion here they must be confirmed and be members of the church. So after they had been there for a 2hr service, they wanted to stay for another hour to be confirmed and then they took communion. It was great.

These people have so much faith! It is amazing to see!

With most of the population being Muslum, 5 times a day they stop everything and pray. One man has a microphone and prays over the loud speaker. If you think about it pray for the Musluims about 11pm Chicago time. That is 5am in the morning when the Musliums are doing their morning prayer. It is hard to sleep throught but I am very thankful for worship music and ipods.

Even though there are many musliums here the Holy Spirit is definetly present! And the Lord is working in the people.


I want to thank you all for reading and commenting on my blog. It really means a lot to me. I look forward every day to read all of the comments you put. They are all very encouraging.

One more comment about going to the market. Coming back from camping we were very dirty. We had to walk through the market to get to the trotro. Now we already stick out because we are white but now we are extremely dirty white people. We already are stared at for being white but being dirty white people make people stop all that they were doing and just watch us walk by.

I could not help but think that this was what the homeless of Chicago feel like as people walk by. Feel like they are strange animals; like we should not be here and there is not place for us.

I have so much more respect for the people of the street. I could not be looked at like that all the time. The next time you walk by someone that does not have a home, try just to look at them in the eye, say hi, or even introduce yourself; they might have made some poor decisions but so have you. They are people and have feelings too.

In Wa

I made it to Wa!

We left at 8:45 in the morning and there was not much traffic and no bus problems so we made it by 9pm. It only took 12hrs!

The bus was like a coach bus with air co (AC) and nice seats with arm rests. There were even TVs in which they played Nigerian films pretty much the whole time. When we first left the bus station the bus driver put on the radio and all of a sudden I noticed it was Christian music. I was like what... but I realized in Accra it is very common to have christian music playing and there are signs all over the place saying to love the Lord.

As for animals in Ghana the animals are goats, chickens, dogs, lizards, some sheep and lots of bugs.