HOME IN 10 HOURS: The Preface (part 1)

So I spent a few days in Accra and I had to head back home. After the relocation, I have never seen Accra as home anymore. Yeah I sometimes miss the people, my parents, my friends, my students and some girls but Kola Ville Accra has just become a rest stop or a hideout when I’m in the city. I stay indoors half the time and I realize that if I don’t get online, folk don’t even realize I’m in Accra so I leave it be like that. I love it like that!

The Kola Ville Reloaded Party was a fun party as usual but had to intentionally close it early close to midnight because folk had meant to stay all night and with the rate of alcohol around, I figured it was much safer that we had a memorable event rather than one that will probably end in an alcoholic haze. As per the rules of Kola Ville events, whatever happens in Kola Ville stays in Kola Ville, that is all I’m gonna say on the subject.

This time around I had the privilege of marking almost 200 exam scripts that belong to my students at Methodist University College and one thing was pretty obvious. Our education standards are falling rapidly and we need to do something about it pronto. If this applies to other African countries than I beg to say that I weep for our continent. College students cannot even express themselves and some just do not understand the concepts at all even though they have been in class every day and time. Thing is we don’t have curious minds and whether this is ingrained is where we have to tackle it from. That discussion is also for another post.

(Gosh! I got lots to write on)

Why is it that when you are in a hurry to leave some place or do something everything conspires against you to delay you. Just when i am ready to prepare to leave the house, my mom calls me over to tell me that her favourite ringtone not working so i should see if can fix it. The woman has no idea even how to put on a tv at times especially if it is put off at the socket. Then I remember I have to clear the fridge of all food and drinks (drank a litre of coca cola in twenty minutes) and clear the dishes in the sink. Then I also remember I have to close all the windows and make sure even the toilet is flushed. The gas pipe has to be taken out of the cylinder. All electric gadgets have to be plugged out of their sockets. Wow! All this come to mind when I have only thirty minutes to catch the bus to begin the journey to Tamale.

I also remember that I don’t have a suitcase so my nearest thought is to use a pillow case. After all there are designer bags that look like pillow cases so I find my best designer pillow case (a Tommy Hilfiger) and pack my clothes into it. But I later realise that I can equally do the same with a suit bag and I use that one instead. Looks like a bag and is easy to carry and pack overhead on the bus.

Finally I get out of the house carrying my bags and straight away I hail a cab to take me to the bus station. Taxi drivers are the most critical persons you will meet in Ghana. They criticise everyone and everything and even their fellow drivers but themselves. The shortest route to the station has apparently been blocked by works on a bridge that links two communities, blocked in the middle of the day when traffic is busy. ‘The nonsense of it’ my taxi driver says, ‘why don’t they just do this at night when there is less traffic?’ He forgets that the people who he requires to do that work are also human beings who should be sleeping especially in this cold Accra weather.

We talk about a whole lot of things: girls, traffic, roads, food and life in general. Whilst I’m in a hurry to get to the bus station, this driver stops at a ‘polo’ joint and gets some of the pastry which we gladly share and eat whilst I try to call Nana Yaw the station manager to book my ticket on the bus. Nana Yaw doesn’t pick up but i don’t panic, been travelling this route too many times to worry about not setting off. We take the most direct route and get to the station just as the bus is loading and i get to see Nana Yaw who offers me the last ticket on the first luxury bus. I quickly snap at it when i realize that the cheaper second bus has already been fully booked. It usually has more local people and it’s quite noisy too since there are more children on that bus.

Traveling on a bus with people can be pretty interesting. Human beings are fun people to just sit and observe and you always learn a lot from them. The dynamics of human beings in an enclosed space determines how you react to things around you and if I was going to travel ten hours with these other almost thirty people I had to observe them closely.

On the bus first thing was to get the phone credits from guy who walked on the bus amongst a throng of other sellers who were out to make a buck off the passengers. These include bread sellers, drink for refreshments and sweets and fruits. There was even a jacket seller to cater for those who cannot stand the cold air-condition temperature of the bus.

I call my twin roommate that I have sorted myself out and got on the bus and the journey begins. Now I have ten hours to get home – stoppages and all.



*Polo – local biscuit made from cassava dough


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