i haven’t posted any images of life on the street in accra, so i wanted to end with some i took today, coming back from the art centre.
this man is selling coconuts out of a wheelbarrow on oxford street in osu. people in ghana are serious about selling things. from handmade items to sneakers to plastic buckets, you can get almost anything just walking down a well-traveled street.
and if you’re in a car, most major intersections are “staffed” by hawkers selling goods along the medians and between lanes, many carrying whatever they’re hawking on their heads. newspapers, chewing gum, bananas, plastic bags of water, flavored milks and ice creams, bread, the list goes on.
people seem to have few qualms about peeing in public. from children, to men of all stripes, to women squatting beside a bus en route to accra. people just seem to pee when they need to pee, usually into cement trenches along the sides of most roads that serve as sewers and storm drains. it seems this is a behavior the government is looking to change—i saw a commercial on tv sponsored by the vice president’s commission on discipline, depicting a homeless-looking man whacking a well-dressed man who just up and pees against a building.
trash is burned in significant quantities—especially along the beach just west of the hotel! i assume that pungent unmistakable smell i noticed when i got off the plane was more from the burning of trash than automobile pollution—which is also extensive. cars and trucks belch exhaust so think and black it can obscure the view of the cars behind it—let alone making it hard to breathe.
i’m sure there’s more, like the lizards that sun themselves along the hotel’s sidewalks, and the problem of plastic everywhere (it doesn’t biodegrade and there are no public trash receptacles, thus plastic bags are fast becoming part of the urban environment). this all seems negative now that i’m rereading it, but it’s not meant to be. these are the things my eyes notice, that i find interesting.
alas, the hour of departure is fast approaching. adieu africa! meda w’ase accra!