Opinion

Rami Baitie writes…In Ghana!

Some time in 2013 a book was published in Ghana. Authored by famous Ghanaian writer NANA DAMOAH (he deserves capital letters), it was titled I SPEAK OF GHANA (more deserved capital letters). One chapter was headlined YOU KNOW YOU ARE IN GHANA (even more capital letters).

 

I enjoyed that chapter so much that I was foolish enough to attempt something similar (no capital letters). Or was I drunk? Or was I high? Or was I just married??

Well, whatever the reason I decided to share my lame effort with you. But if you dare agree that my effort is lame…

Because I am so clever I titled mine: In Ghana!

You know you are in Ghana when a taxi driver insults you violently for stopping at a red light.

You know you are in Ghana when a pedestrian prefers to walk on a road…right next to the pavement.

You know you are in Ghana when the average football fan knows more about the English Premier League than he knows about the Ghana Premier League.

You know you are in Ghana when you visit someone for the express purpose of charging your mobile device. 

You know you are in Ghana when you say “ssssss” to a large crowd of people and expect only the person you want to turn round.

You know you are in Ghana when you say “Help yourself” to someone and they take EVERYTHING.

You know you are in Ghana when you acknowledge applause and then realise that someone was killing mosquitoes by clapping.

You know you are in Ghana when a lady opens a door and a man walks through it first without so much as a thank you….and with a frown on his face.

You know you are in Ghana when the noise someone generates slurping their tea-tea, or tea-coffee, or tea-Milo, is louder than traffic.

You know you are in Ghana when you can see what somebody had for breakfast yesterday as he chews loudly with his mouth open at lunch today.

You know you are in Ghana when someone serves themselves at a buffet by putting a salad on the plate first, and then the main course on top of the first course, and then a dessert on top of that.

You know you are in Ghana when you get to a traffic hot spot and realise it’s because taxi drivers are rubbernecking an accident and offering free (foolish) advice.

You know you are in Ghana when you answer the phone and say “Hello” and the other person says “Hello”, and then you say “Hello” and then the other person says “Hello”, and then you say "Hello"…….

You know you are in Ghana when a pedestrian crossing the street is more interested in waving at someone than avoiding the car 2 inches away from him.

You know you are in Ghana when you can gain access to a prohibited place simply because your complexion is fair.

You know you are in Ghana when you can ask a sales assistant at the concessionary stand at a cinema to bring you a drink at your seat in the cinema when the drink gets colder. 

You know you are in Ghana when environmentally conscious means that your spit lands in the gutter instead of on the road.

You know you are in Ghana when rich albinos are called Massa Red but poor albinos are called Ofiri Gyato.

You know you are in Ghana when you see a buffet and ask “Where is the food?” because there are only foreign dishes and no local dishes.

You know you are in Ghana when you see a woman in black anywhere on the Mortuary road and assume she is a professional mourner.

You know you are in Ghana when the rubbish collection doesn’t happen for a few weeks and then they turn up at 4 am blowing the horn loudly and shouting angrily at everybody who is asleep.

You know you are in Ghana when a tro-tro stops at the only place on a road that has a No Stopping sign.

You know you are in Ghana when the congregation know the birthdays of pastor’s wife and children better than they know any part of the Bible.

You know you are in Ghana when a househelp can put an unopened tin of sardines in a fridge and empty containers back in a freezer.

You know you are in Ghana when a small car can be driven, manoeuvred, parked, and accelerated like a car 4 times its size.

You know you are in Ghana when a member of the audience shouts out the twist ending of a book at a reading by the author.

You know you are in Ghana when you try to 'rap' a young girl and she calls you Uncle….or Grandad.

You know you are in Ghana when the begging starts in the new terminal at the airport….before you emerge at the Arrivals area.

You know you are in Ghana when you use words with more than one syllable, and you are immediately described as being elitist. 

You know you are in Ghana when a policeman stops you for not wearing a seat belt….which you are wearing.

You know you are still in Ghana when the same policeman demands your drivers' license and proceeds to inspect it while holding it upside down. 

You know you are in Ghana when a bridal party arrives at a reception hours late and you are considered 'too known' because you left.

You know you are in Ghana when someone attempts a 'foreign' accent because they are speaking to a 'foreigner'. 

You know you are in Ghana when a local DJ equates volume with quality….and can't hear you when you try to explain he needs to lower the volume so guests can actually speak.

You know you are in Ghana when a creature selling gospel CDs on the road informs you that they will bring you peace in your life….while his 'car store' belts out music at a zillion decibels behind him.

You know you are in Ghana when a woman passing by can give your eyes enough exercise for a year.

You know you are in Ghana when someone who was as dark as you in secondary school is now a possible relative of the current US President.

You know you are in Ghana when someone posts once a week on his blog, and only on a Saturday night….when he should be otherwise engaged. 

 

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