Africa journal June 2020

Journal entries for June 2020

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I think the rainy season is upon us.   There’s more cloudy days, some strong rains at night, maybe 10° cooler every day.

During my bike ride today when buying bananas I saw about 10 little kids screaming.  It looked like some version of hide and go seek.

  I am so thankful that I’m far away from the USA. Ama is giving me some work – installing the veneer thin plywood onto the ceiling of a couple of rooms she’s bringing into use.

 And then I’ll use YouTube and gravitate over to how to work on the Subaru.

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When on my bike rides in this neighborhood I see two things that I smile inwardly at.  One would be all the alleyways which are roads that are eroded and many people use these, reminding me of the back ways between houses as a kid in Newark.

The other are what look like lemonade stands , a little bit bigger maybe, with adults selling charcoal or food.

These people are quite poor.  But the little kids smile and scream when I go by on the bike. Somehow they’re happy.

This neighborhood is rich and poor.  I’m glad to be in a mixed neighborhood.

 We’re staying healthy, trying to eat fresh foods, although it’s impossible to avoid crowds when shopping in the center.  Half of the people don’t wear the facemasks.

I hope things stay healthy here so the airport will open to international flights again.

 It was actually down to 69° last night!  So I’m doing better.  I can’t complain.

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The interesting thing about humans and other beings is we so darn often look to our local neighbors or geographical neighbors as an outlet for our anger.   I wonder how long before compassion becomes part of life.

   I bought some credit for our phones today from a lady up the street I often buy from.  She wears the Muslim head scarf and has a sweet demeanor.  She was listening to prayer music that sounds very much like the Hebrew prayers of my youth.   She’s more like me than many I meet here.

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We won’t have to decide whether to give up our seats for any compensation.   Delta has decided for us.   Or actually, Ghana has.   The government is keeping flights from the EU and USA from coming for 3 weeks more. 

 I’m kind of disappointed tho Ama is happy.  We have her house to live in and hopefully as the rainy season approaches the roof will do its thing. 

 I miss my Western culture somewhat and in a way it’s like I’m on a long meditation retreat.  

But also there’s very little gun violence here.  

I’m thankful for my friends and being able to stay in touch. 

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 I see that most people here live either ignoring the pollution or are so used to the noise and smoke pollution that they don’t do much about it.   Although, the minute you get into a taxi the conversation starts with ‘Ayy’ and it’s all about complaining.  It shows me, among other things, that Ghana is not a very happy place to live (unless you’re rich).

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Meditating through the stress of uncertainty.  

The cost of living here isn’t high luckily.  Buying bottled water is important and it’s only around 45 cents for 1 1/2 litres.