SO, i was rereading my last post and although i feel as though i should perhaps re-write it a bit to make it more exciting, i instead want to write about some small things that have worked its way into the inner workings of my mind. Get ready, my mind is one weird place.

One of my favorite people in Seviefe was Divine, he was the architect who designed the school that is being built and he’s also just an all-around nice guy. He’s also one of the the drummers who performed for us last week. I find him refreshing because he is genuine in a way that not many Ghanaians are, he says whatever is on his mind and is not afraid to ask us whichever question pops into his head.

We were talking yesterday about how kate and i would love to come back for a couple weeks next year and see how everyone and everything is moving along. At that, divine looked to me and said, “You could find a husband here, you know?” Kate automatically gets exempt from comments such as that because at this point they all know that she has jon, but because i’m single, i am expected to marry a man in town and bring charles his little white baby. It’s pretty funny, i take no offense and they say it in such a lighthearted manner that it’s amusing. Well, we all know how i feel about marriage and so when i told Divine that i didn’t think i would be marrying a man in the village his response was a somewhat surprised, “Eh! Why?!”

I told him that i don’t know if i want to get married and he asked me if i wanted to be lonely with no family. I said, “No, i don’t want to be lonely. Not at all, but i have too many things that i want to do with my life before i even think about marriage. I want to go back to school, and make a career, and i want to make sure that i really, really, love someone before i marry them.”

“Ah, this is something that we Ghanaians don’t understand, we don’t understand love. We don’t marry for love, we marry to make families, or we go to bed with a girl and she gets pregnant and we have to stay with them. We don’t have much love.”

It’s interesting, because this is something that i’ve actually noticed. But i do think that they have love, but love is measured in different terms than the way that you and i account for it. Ernestine absolutely adores Enyonam, but the relationship between her and Charles is not necessarily one that i would consider to be made out of love. The members of the communities love one another, they watch out and make sure that everyone is alive and well.

Divine was explaining to us how he missed the Ghana/Nigeria football match last week because he was too busy in the bush (the woods) the next town over looking for a man that had gone missing. “He was a…how do you say? Crazy man, but he is still another man and he was missing for three days but we found him alive. We had to bring him back.” I think that is love. I think this was something that Divine admired about our culture, and i have to say that it is something that i admire about theirs. All people are considered to be valuable enough to look in the bush for three days for. To them, many things are about necessity, even love, whereas for us it is a luxury. Makes you think, eh?

Divine also found is fascinating that we have poor people in the states. To most people here, any yevu is made of money. One thing that bothers me that i have to tell myself to get over is the fact that people see our skin and think that we have everything. Don’t get me wrong, we have much more than many people here, and if i’ve learned anything it’s to be so so grateful for what i have. But if kate and i gave up everything we’ve been asked for we would leave Ghana with nothing. Divine was literally shocked to learn that people live on the streets and there are some who have no money or means to feed their family. He thought this was something to only happen to Africa. Our worlds are very different, but in so many ways they are the same as well. Our country as a whole is wealthier, but the individuals in it can still be as unfortunate.

Divine was completely unabashed when asked us about what we have and what we don’t have, it made me realize how differently people think us to be. Sammy too, who was the painter for the school. You would think that to them our white skin was made of porcelain, by how afraid they are for us to complete the same tasks as them every day. When we were carrying the cinder blocks  for the house last week, Set (Charles father who lives next door) made us take a small small (they say ‘small small’ instead of ‘a little’) break every two or so blocks because he thought we couldn’t handle it. When we asked Sammy if we could help him on his farm he told us that “Nooo, no no it is too far for you, too long a walk.” Even when we told them that we would be going on hikes or traveling around the country by ourselves they thought we couldn’t handle it.

 

As Ben likes to say, “You like the adventures, no?”

 

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