Thursday, July 3, 2008

It was spicy, I almost died, It was awesome.

Howdy! July 1st is republic day in Ghana, which is their version of independence day. So of course the entire country was gonna boogie. I had to work that day though and helped produced the news hour and my boss let me off early to rage. Down at Labadi beach was the epicenter of the party. There was a huge stage and just arriving to the beach by tro tro (the van/bus/taxi system that is the most confusing and terrifying). We were told that if you go in through the back gate it only cost 1 cedi vs 5 if you go through the front so of course we went to the back but when we arrived there was a mass of people pushing and shoving while guards armed with assault rifles manned the gate. A couple giant Ghanaians took over our group and shoved and dragged us through the scene that could have been cut from 28 days later. I thought I was going to get trampled while squeezing through the small opening and arriving on the other side just to be met with a hike through mud and trash to finally arrive at the party. We passed through another security checkpoint and then our personal security personal demanded that we pay them with some small argueing we each paid 3 cedis that was well worth the protection. The beach was full of Ghanaians playing football (soccer) on the beach, drinking heavily and of course trying to sell me crap. Anywhere I go in Accra I stand out because I am white but here the spotlight seemed to be shinning extra bright as drunk Ghanaians don't seem to care about personal space. After grabbing some brews to calm the groups nerves some of the group couldn't stand the party any longer and left before the concert. Myself and three others decided to stay as the crowd started to get rowdy and the show began. First there was a booty shaking contest and that was awesome as my companions danced on the sidelines. Then when the main acts started to go on and we had consumed a couple boxes of sangria we decided to go for it and jumped right into the middle of the dance party. The concert was massive the only venue that comes close to it was seeing Dave at the Gorge in Washington state. If you take an aerial shot of that show and look at the negative you can get an idea of how out of place me and my obrouni friend were. We were the only white people (Scot was there and he is black but still obviously an obrouni) in a sea of black. We kept boogeying and played defense as the Ghanaians tried to brush the Michelle and Krista's hair and grab there asses. The acts on stage were incredible and the crowd got so into the show and danced the night away. It started to get out of control and a little scary so we left the party completely drunk and sweaty. It was an awesome Republic Day. Also, so I started doing the Parliament beat for Peace FM (the day after I got wasted for republic day). I arrived at parliament and just walked through the gate without any sort of security check or anything I just told them I was with Peace FM and they bought it. Parliament was not what I expected. They brought in the Golden Scepter to start the session and say a pray. The golden scepter has to be present or Parliament doesn't count. Sometimes when the members of Parliament get to rowdy and the speaker can't control them he will just grab the scepter and run out of the room with it and parliament is over. My first day it wasn't all that exciting, in fact most of the members didn't show up for the Minister of Health's reports. The ones who were there didn't really pay attention as they chatted and talked on their cell phones if it wasn't their time to talk. Anyway I got my first stories read on air one last night for the 6 o'clock news show and one this morning for the morning show. They also put them online. They are short but they are written for radio and the ambulance one came with a voice clip that I took from Parliament. So if you want to check them out here they are: Also the stories are translated into twi so I didn't know they were running my story till I heard the announcer say 'district hospital' and was all like 'hey I wrote about that'. I'm surprised about how much responsibility they are giving me. OK one last thing that just happened and was awesome. So when I came back from Parliament today the office was having fire protection day. Last year on this day apparently there was a fire in marketing and the building went up. There isn't any alarm system so the people in the studio in the basement stayed on the air until the smoke came down and they freaked out and ran. No one got hurt, but now they fire department comes to teach people what to do during a fire. The best part was when they said they would do a demonstration. Immediately I thought this is gonna be awesome. So to cut it short they lit a big metal bowl on fire and people took turns using blankets and fire extinguishers to put it out in the yard outside the office. I stood at a distance with a goat i named oreo to see the disaster (ya my office has goats outside, your's doesn't?). Of course after a couple people went they added more gas and the thing got out of control. The small fire exploaded to a 6 foot rager and the firemen grabbed the extinguisher but it was all out of juice from all the other demonstrations. So they just let it burn out and everyone was fine but i think the goats were freaked out. Ok, Allright, come on this is too long, I should get back to work. Go Ducks!


Anonymous said...

Hey man, pretty sweat blog and some great stories. Keep 'em up.

I just got to Boulder after a pretty fun road trip. I would blog about it, but I wouldn't want to distract from yours.



Anti-S said...

Nef-J: Job offer from resort guy sounds TGTBT, so GWTF. Never know if these messages are understood - don't TM at all. Thought LOL was lots of luck for the longest time....very NYC. My vote for staying longer. Don't see you much when U R stateside anyway.
LOL, Anti-S