Sunday, January 24, 2010


It was curves and hills most of the way. Rocky in parts. Potholes too; lots of them. The bus driver navigated the route effortlessly. He must have done it countless times. I was the only one on the bus; the only passenger, I mean. "VIP", I told the driver. He laughed. Later he echoed in his french accent, "VIP". Yes, I felt special on the bus that day. Thankfully the driver left me to my thoughts. My eyes wandered as I gazed out of the windows. We passed a little village with mud homes scattered on both sides of the road. There were also brick structures - cement brick rather than the familiar burnt brick. Children played in the different yards. I saw three boys along a small foot bridge. I saw a toddler engrossed in some activity and another small child sitting on the steps of an old dwelling. Along the way we passed a mother sitting out in a front yard, breast-feeding, while others conversed about her. The scene was busy yet she appeared oblivious to the goings-on. I watched a lady walking on the side of this major, yet narrow road, carrying a baby. I remember thinking how I could never live near such a busy road-

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Holidays

Dear readers,

I wish you all a glorious new year 2010! We made it, all thanks to God. Remember that many people gave up at the last minute... a young teenage cousin of mine died a day or two before January first. Very sad. Then this first week of January, 2 family friends also passed away. Life has never been a given, and even though things can get unbearably rough sometimes, let us continue to be grateful and press on. My sister quoted a Chinese proverb in her recent newsletter... The journey is the reward - how true! I now think of it as Life is the journey!

I came to Ghana to spend the holidays with my parents and baby brother whom I had not seen since January 2006 (4 years). Lots had transpired in that time... armed robbers broke into their home in eastern Nigeria, then months later in NJ a man broke into my apartment. My parents later relocated to Ghana two years ago, and I relocated to the southern U.S. a little over a year ago. 2009 was a turbulent year for me. After a turbulent 2007-8, I positively anticipated 2009 to bring peace in its wake. With a new husband and new home, I had much excitement and trepidation. Alas, the strain and stress became a torment and I am glad that 2009 is gone. Golly, I must be the happiest person in the world.

For those in hard places right now, hold on to hope. Hang on to the good things in your life and believe God that things will certainly improve. After all, as is said, once you hit rock bottom the only way possible is up. A minister at church once told me (after I cried out in desperation and she prayed with me), your situation will get much worse before it can get better. I was miserable yet I braced myself. How right she was. After she said that, all hell broke loose in my life. Honestly, back then, I didn't know that I could survive the year. I was on the brink... an amalgam of despair and frustration. But I did survive, because God gave me His strength and I leaned on Him. It is not over until God says it is over. As for me, I think my life is just beginning in some respects. I can't explain it properly but kind of like a new lease.

From a distance, now living miles away from my old life in the States, I have had time to reflect and mull over the many experiences of 2009. At this juncture I know the future will be greater than the past. At this precise moment I feel a glorious peace in my spirit, and as I gaze outside through the open door to the balcony, I see the clear blue sky and smile... then I burst into song I feel good... na na na na na.

Accra is a beautiful and colourful west African city full of life and energy. My parents live in a quiet suburb and this has afforded me much needed rest. This holiday has been a special retreat and I have recuperated physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually from the strains and stresses of the past four years. I have taken lots of photos and will leave with fond memories. I was glad to meet my parents alive and well. The years roll by and the human body ages. Death hovers and I am not naive to the fact that not one of us knows the time nor the place when and where we shall breathe our last. I am thankful for each moment spent in the company of loved ones.

In a few days I shall return to the central African city where I work. Back to the grind. A trying assignment but a welcome source of livelihood. I will be miles from my family once more, dealing with the daily hassles of living in a war-ravaged nation while being overwhelmed with sympathy for the people who have no where else to call home. At the same time, a certain weary despair for the world in general settles upon my heart - why all the fighting? Wars from Asia to Africa? Instability in Europe and the US? Why can't we just all get along? But in all things we should give thanks and be grateful for what we have. I hope to have better internet access when I go back and plan to resume regular activity on blogspot. Thanks for reading and sorry to be missing all your lovely blog posts. I do try to catch up as much as I can, although not usually able to leave comments.

Again, I wish you all a glorious new year 2010! We made it, all thanks to God.