Some of you know I'm in Ghana now, celebrating my son's graduation. What a blast it has been! When Tolu called ten days before the event, I had no idea I would be able to make the trip, but I found a flight on KLM and voila!
It never ceases to amaze me how you can be in one world and then you get on a plane and come out into a totally different world. The heat! Talk about oven hot! The smell of sugar cane and flowers! Many of us were sweaty, especially those of us who flew from the U.S. to Amsterdam the day before and didn't have a chance to shower before flying to Ghana, 20 hours in all! I look forward to United Airlines and all those companies flying directly to Ghana. It will be only 9 hours instead of twenty!
People don't realize that London and Accra are both on the same longitude. The Prime Meridian passes through both, so Accra is nearly the same distance from Washington or New York as London is. Yes, Ghana isn't that far away. Cultural difference is another thing all together! But let's back up a bit and talk about the flight.
From Washington to Amsterdam, I sat next to a woman who took half my seat with her weight. Now, I have no desire to persecute those challenged weight-wise (I've been there), but I can now understand why airlines demand that massive people buy two tickets. On an eight-hour overnight flight, I thought it most unfair of my neighbor to not only take the arm rest but half of my seat. Fortunately, the lovely stewardess had mercy and put me next to a lovely gentleman who must be the happiest American I've ever encountered. He lives in Virginia, is an IT executive, CEO of another firm, lives on a farm, raises his own chickens etc, and has a lovely wife and a very lucky one-year-old. Dad speaks a smattering of several languages and is determined to teach them to his son. What a lucky little fellow. The next leg of the trip, Amsterdam-Accra, is forgettable except for the last thirty minutes when I th0ought the plane would never land.
I emerged from Immigration and Customs and there stood the loveliest son in the whole wide world! He picked me up like I weighed nothing and I hugged him until I thought I'd cry. My wonderful big brother was there too. It was nine p.m., 87 steamy degrees outside and the car's aircondition waged a brave but futile battle with the heat. We got home to my brother's house where we ate cocoyam leaf stew with boiled yams which I washed down with icy guava juice, yummm! Did I mention that my sister-in-law was lovely and a great cook? That's how day one went.
Right now, I'm enjoying a visit with a friend. Stay tuned for more with pictures. I have limited internet access but will update soon!
Gluttonous Autumn in New York
1 week ago