FRIDAY THE 13th of July
I don’t consider myself much of a superstitious person. But if you asked me on Friday, I would have had to stop and think about it for a second.
Before it even began, Friday was jinxed. It all started a week prior, when I was planning a semi-spontaneous trip to Togo and Benin. I had been looking forward to it ever since Leslie and Cara (my sweet USAC alumni pals!) first told me about their crazy adventure. This weekend was our very last free three-day weekend before finals and before leaving Ghana, so I knew I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. I would go into detail about all the planning and maneuvering around class trips and exams to orchestrate the expedition, but I would be saying a lot of words just to say that it didn’t work out. As much as I’m bummed, these things happen for a reason, right? The latest news is that because it’s Togo’s election year, there has been quite a bit of rioting and striking going on, which can make it a sketchy time for a foreigner to be sight-seeing anyway. C’est la vie!
In any event, the group spent nearly the entire day looking forward to the evening. Heard there was some kind of half-off drink special at Honeysuckle, so we thought we might head over to the Osu district to check it out. A few of us were feeling pretty famished, so we left early to get a head start on dinner. Hmm, how do I go about this play-by-play... Rna, Ridhi, and I catch a cab. Cab breaks down five minutes later. We get out. Find a different cab. Different cab gets lost. Cabbie tries to overcharge us. We refuse to pay cabbie more than we had agreed upon. Cabbie drops us off at a random gas station in Osu. We stumble around in the dark and walk all the way to Honeysuckle. Show up to find a few of our friends standing outside dejectedly because there is a 15 Cedi cover fee per person. Decide to try and find dinner elsewhere in Osu. Look for food in Osu. Restaurants are expensive. Get a call after more than an hour of stumbling that the cover at Honeysuckle would have gone toward our bill! Yet, we were so hungry and tired that we decided to settle on pizza at Mamma Mia.
I swear, pizza has to have some kind of magical properties because it really turned my night around. Probably the best veggie pizza I have ever had. On our way home, we just so happened to hop in the taxi of the sweetest cabbie in the world, Charles. Usually cabbies are polite and will make small talk, but not so with Charles. He let us in on his life... why he’s a cab driver, what he wants to do, even getting to know us and making sure we’ve visited all the best places in Accra.
When I think about it, it all sounds pretty anticlimactic in retrospect. I don't know what it is. Something about that night, about the familiar feeling of wandering around the city with good company made me feel so at home. Cheers to this. I’m going to miss this.