Sex and the City 2 instantly made Ghana a hit, but today we found the Holy Grail. The plan for today was to navigate the big markets in Accra and see what we could find. As we were weaving our way past dried fish, vegetables, cooking utensils, mountains of fabric, and everything else under the sun I remembered something that I've looked high and low for in Dakar only to come up empty handed. Around Christmas time a group of us were walking around Dakar when we saw a girl carrying a bag made out of Barak Obama fabric. Obviously I had to it have it and since then have scoured Senegal for Obama fabric to no avail. The fabric selection in Accra blew my mind and it reminded me to look for it. We asked a few ladies selling fabric who at first laughed at us and then led us to a stall that actually had TWO different types of Obama fabric. After Katherine and I both did a victory dance and told the women who owned the stall how great Accra is we bought half of the Obama fabric they had in stock. Other than finding the Obama fabric which was great, walking through Accra's main market was amazing. The amount of different products, the quality of those products, and the way in which they display those products is significantly nicer than the comparable marketing in Dakar.
After the regular market we walked in a giant circle before righting ourselves and heading over to the artisanal market. I thoroughly enjoyed the walk around Accra except for the fact that there's about 150% humidity here and my clothes were stuck to my body. I don't know if rainy season was ever as humid as it is here in Ghana (I may just be blocking it out of my memory), but I do think Senegal is hotter. Even when we left I think that Thies was hotter than Accra. Sweating profusely and absolutely disgusting we arrived at the artisan market. Some of the stuff was nice and interesting, but the vast majority of the goods were generic African things that are all over Dakar and even Thies. It was definitely fun to look and barter though. Katherine and I both commented on the fact that we spent the better part of our day wandering around markets. If I had to do that in Senegal, A. I never would and B. I would be so frustrated that I would most definitely be in tears and driving myself mad. The joy of wearing rose colored glasses on vacation has definitely not warn off. Both of us are surprised at how calm and relaxed we've managed to stay.
By the time we realized what time it was lunch had come and passed and we jumped in a cab to head back in the direction of our hotel. One of the best seafood restaurants in Accra is on the same street as our hotel and we thought we should try it out for lunch since it would be cheaper and we would stick out less in our Peace Corps khaki capri uniforms. We arrived minutes before the kitchen closed, but had a wonderful lunch. I had a salad with prawns and avocados that was out of this world. There are avocados here as big as my head and I'm taking every opportunity to indulge.
Tonight we intended to go down to the beach and listen to some reggae music and get a bite to eat, but the weather had different plans. It started monsoon-ing just after we got back to the hotel and hasn't stopped. Our backup plan was to go see another movie at the Accra Mall. This too was a failure. We pulled out our rain jackets, grabbed an umbrella, and headed out in the monsoon to hail a cab. After becoming sufficiently drenched we found a cab. We got in, told him where we were going, he drove further away from our hotel, and then told us he didn't want to take us to the mall and didn't want to drive us back to the hotel. We ran/ huddled under the umbrella together back to our hotel where Katherine struggled to close the umbrella as a group of American NGO workers laughed at us from inside. We did look ridiculous. There really wasn't much left to do other than grab a delicious Ghanaian cider and call it a night.
Messy, but Warm
10 months ago