Monday 10 July 2006

James Town

The plan of going to James Town first thing in the morning failed to materialise. I awoke just before my alarm sounded, so I switched it off and promptly got back to sleep.

A couple of hours later, it was too hot to wander about so I headed off to BusyInternet to update the blog and check on emails.

On the way home, I decided to go back down Oxford Street, as it is affectionately known to try to find the chap who wanted to sell me a wrist band thingy. I had decided that I quite liked it after all and if I could pay next to nothing for it, I would have it. When I eventually switch out of traveller mode, I’m sure I won’t ever wear it again. Needless to say, our man today was transformed into a painter not a craftsman and didn’t have what I wanted. I was good enough to let him show me his art before scampering.

Later I went out via the bureau de change where I managed to exchange a crisp $100 bill for 91 10,000 cedi tatty sheets. I flagged down a cab and got him to take me to James Town. My intention was to find the man from the little craft stall, whom I met a couple of days back, and to ask him to ‘guide’ me around while I took some photos ie talk the same language, steer me away from danger and persuade people that I’m not so bad after all.

I stopped briefly to watch the street football and as I approached the stall, he came out and called my name. He took me inside and I said to him that I’d like to take some pics around before coming back to buy a couple of items but that I thought that people didn’t much like photographers around here. He offered to take me. I managed to squeeze off a few frames of life in a shanty town. Hopefully, the outcome will be worth the hassle.

Back to his shop and I asked him for elephants. I haggled a little but gave him a good deal, knowing I was getting one too. Plus, rather than giving him cash for his help, I was paying a little bit more for the goods.

As I was leaving, he said ‘I like your sneakers’. I told him I needed my footwear and that I was heading out of Accra tomorrow. I would be back on Sunday but might not be able to make it back since I was flying to London that night. He said he understood and that he’d be waiting for me at 6pm on Sunday. I’m not entirely convinced he did understand.

Tomorrow I head off to Ada Foah, directly East along the coast.