I am sorry about the long lapse since our last blog. This one was written on Saturday night but I have had power and internet outages for the last 3 days. This year we have two parents who have traveled with their children. This is a big commitment. Each person must raise $3,300–this means $6,600 for a parent/teen combination as well as double the shots, malaria pills and other necessities when going to Africa. Renee and Aaron Rudolph have traveled to Ghana. Two years ago, Aaron’s older brother, traveled with us.
Saturday, August 2, 2014
Today, we really got a taste of Ghana when we traveled to the Cultural Market in Accra. As soon as the van pulled into the parking lot, the vendors were right there waiting for us to come out, each of them holding some of their handmade goods. Debi and Mercia arranged for us to be greeted by Joshua, who brought us back to his drum shop. We sat down for a spectacular drum performance, and afterwards, the men taught us some drumming rhythms.
After the show we broke off into groups to go around the market while Debi bargined for our drums. This is where the real fun began. No matter which way we turned, there was a vendor trying to come and get us to come into their shop, and buy their goods. Each stall held something a little different. There were lots of carvings, canvas paintings, beaded jewelry, clothing, wooden masks and wall hangings. Joshua acted like my personal tour guide, and bodyguard. He didn’t allow other vendors to try and persuade us to come into their shops. He made sure he took me, and the few people in my little group, to honest vendors where we would get good prices. Bargaining is a MUST. Their prices are a bit high, but they are willing to listen to our offers as well and then negotiate. I was able to barter for a few items as well, using ball point pens and Crystal light singles…it’s the little things!
The experience was slightly overwhelming and intimidating, but I was able to pick up many items at a really great price. My husband will be so proud! We will return to the market next week, and I WILL be looking for my personal assistant, Joshua, to assist me in my adventure. I truly enjoyed the experience; this trip to Ghana would not have been complete without it!
The cultural market in Ghana is very interesting. There are a lot of tourists there; more then were at the regular market or anywhere else. It wasn’t very crowded there, however you had very little personal space. The shops were not big and every one that was there was crowded around you trying to sell you their items.
Bargaining was very hard to do because they didn’t like to drop in any of their prices other then about 5-10 Cedis, unless you walked away or found it somewhere else. Most of the things you will buy at the market are: hand carved masks, animals, and other really cool things. Also there are a lot beaded necklaces and bracelets, shirts, paintings and more fabric.