Thursday, October 17, 2013

Crocodiles, children and celebrations!

Bulika! Everything is going well here in Ghana and we're all having a great time. We've had a busy few days as 9 ICS volunteers based in Tamale came to visit last weekend. It was a bit of a squeeze with 3 in each bed but it was lovely seeing them for the first time since our training week. We danced at the famous Soul Train on Friday evening and then on Saturday morning we all headed by tro-tro to Navrongo, a small town about half an hour from Bolgatanga, where we met up with all of the Sandema team for Poppy's birthday celebrations. On Sunday we all went to Paga, which is a small town on the border with Burkina Faso. Paga is known for its sacred crocodile ponds where visitors can touch the crocodiles.

Crocodile Ponds in Paga
There was a national holiday in Ghana on Tuesday this week for the Muslim festival of Eid al Adha, or 'Festival of Sacrifice', which is one of the two most important festivals in the Muslim calendar. About 17.6% of Ghana's population are Muslim and Bolgatanga has a large Muslim population, so the celebrations were very big here. Our friend Yusuf kindly invited us to spend the festival with his family and cooked us some delicious Ghanaian food including beef, guinea fowl, jollof rice, fufu and groundnut soup. It was lovely meeting his family and we especially enjoyed playing with his nieces, who all looked fantastic in their beautiful dresses.

Lamley, Cara, Kez and Kay with Yusuf's mother and nieces.

In the afternoon, Cara and I went to the market to buy some fabric so that we can get some traditional Ghanaian dresses made ready for 'Dress up Fridays'. While we were at the market we met a group of children who we sat and played with for a while. They loved posing for photos and taking photos of each other and we can't wait to get the photos printed and take them back for them.

Pull a funny face!
In the evening, we went to a community gathering on our street which was a big celebration for Eid al Adha. The music was great and the children all loved teaching us how to dance. In return we taught them the Macarena!

Hey Macarena!
This week we are looking forward to our next Ghanaian dance lesson at the Centre for National Culture, continuing our work on our project at TradeAid and visiting Tongo, a small town near Bolga known for Tengzug shrine and the Tongo Whistling Rock.

See you next time!


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