Friday, January 20, 2012

More Things to Know ... In Ghana

1. Flies are like vampires. They never come in unless invited (upon the tops of childrens' heads).
 2. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT succumb to the temptation of looking into your latrine; you will rue the day. Better to treat it like the worst sexual experience you've ever had: ignore it completely.
 3. In regards to the above - tell your father you've no idea what I'm talking about. "Sex? Never heard of it ... must be something french ..."
 4. No matter how long you've lived in Africa, waking up in the middle of the night to Jumanji-like drumming vibrating through the floor will always be creepy. (No one is hunting you; zombies do not exist.)
 5. I do not recommend zombie-themed books, shows, movies or jokes. As soon as the thought is entertained, mefloquin-induced dreams will occur. (See number 4)
6. Reading by candle light: terrbily romantic; terrible for your eyes. Decide your fate: blind romantic, complete with adorable seeing-eye pet, or otherwise normal human being deprived of lots of self-love.
7. In regards to the above, standard answer should be: "Of course I don't know what 'self-love' means, dad. Who's JILL? She fell down the hill, right?" *walks backwards from the room*
8. Sewing, knitting, crocheting are all now pasttimes. Call me Aunt Mildred because, apparently, I'm 76 years old.
9. Read enough novels and you will start to talk like one. People like that don't have friends; people like that talk in iambic pentameter to their three-legged cats. Get ready for a long winter ...
10. America, even in thought, is completely overwhelming. Period.
11. Teo years is hardly long enough, trust me.
12. Looking forward to the task of handwashing two or more loads of laundrey is what we call 'Hitting the Pathetic Precipice." Now go fetch your water, loser (said the three-legged cat).
13. Harmattan (translation): biking against the wind both to and from the house; African terrain (translation): up hill both ways; Hot Season (translation): simultaneous heat rash and heat stroke. I am officially an Old Wive's Tale for whiney school children ...
14. A rain shower in Ghana is not a 'rain shower,' it is the Apocalypse - torrential downpours of tsunamic proportions. There will come a day (sometime in April) that all volunteers will pray for one lasting at least 1000 days.
15. Only in Africa will you wish upon a shooting star for the Apocalypse. But you will - Hot Season is upon us ... thank God it's 2012?
16. (Speaking of Hot Season) Beware of the Harmattan snot-rocket. It often comes, unannounced and with astounding aim, from around two seats up. Window seats always run a high risk, but snot-rockets hold a special place in squirm-worthy, Harmattan Hell.
17. Three separate cell phones (positioned at either side and behind you) playing three different songs simultaneously without headphones is totally acceptable; you've been misinformed. NOW ENJOY THE MUSIC.
18. Toffees are completely legitmate currency.
19. The more weirded out you are by the white people you see will directly correlate to your reverse culture-shock upon returning to America. You should probably get out more.
20. Stop!!! Stop, stop. Just stop .... you're still white.

xx