Travel From Cape Coast Ghana to Lome Togo
Cynthia wants to travel to Togo, and I think the only reason is that she wants to speak French. I have done at least five of the maximum two-question probes on why she wants to go Togo, I think she has made up her mind, now her body is going to pay with "seat time." She will be sitting on the seat of a van in Ghana for approximately 24 hours, in a five day period. This is cost a traveler pays for chasing the hope, the problem is she is not a traveler.
She is not happy eating the food of Ghana, I think she believes the food will be better in Togo, she wants African food, I do not know, I try to avoid typical African food, I have been known to say on many occasions,
"Hands that touch Fufu, do not touch me."
(They eat Fufu with their hands, no fork or spoon, truly a messy affair.)
This is a photo of Cynthia eating Ah-tee-Kay or Couscous Cassava with Fish in Cape Coast, this makes me weak watching, and then again, if I smell fish, I want to gag. She eats fish in the room daily; I have yet to negotiate an understanding that fish is not a food for inside a hotel room.
To travel from Cape Coast, Ghana to Lome, Togo we must first take a "Ford" van from Cape Coast to Accra for 7 Cedis. Then somehow, transits to another van going to Aflao, Ghana and walk across the border to Lome, Togo. This is an eight to 10 hour trip, and I do not want to make another long trip, I am tired of moving, I do not want to "Travel." When we arrive, she can only stay for four days, and then she must take a "Direct Ford" from Aflao to Elubo, another 12 hour trip, I think it cost 7000 CFA or maybe 14 USD, I am not sure she understands how much travel time this is, or how tired she will be when she finally arrives back in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. The 12 hours is just from Aflao to Elubo, she then needs to go from Noe, Cote d’Ivoire to Abidjan which is another 4-5 hours. I will stay in Lome, and apply for a Nigeria and Benin Visa, I hope…
This is the first time I have experienced the use of "Ford" or American made vans for public transportation. Generally, in most, the countries I visit cars from America are hard to find, this is a rare experience, and the American car industry does not sell cars worldwide well.
Map showing the eight-hour trip to Lome, Togo from Cape Coast with a transit in Accra. Then the 12-hour direct trip from Alfao to Elubo for Cynthia.
Cape Coast, Ghana West Africa --- Monday, January 10, 2011
I Have Been Warned by African Women
I was in Cape Coast a few years ago, this pretty woman was washing my clothes, and she took up a pair of my underwear and said,
"Make sure you count them, many women in Africa will steal them."
"What do they want with my underwear?"
"They will take them to a sorcerer and put a spell on you, and you will fall in love with them and never leave."
"Please only take one pair."
Second Warning Today in Cape Coast
"When a woman in Togo, Benin, Nigeria or Cameroon offers you food, please refuse."
I say why,
"They will do something, and you will not be able to remember me."
"I will call, and you will say, who are you?"
"You will not be able to remember who I am.
There is almost no Voodoo that is obvious in West Africa, however there always these winds blowing, I have no idea where they come from, but there is an old and ancient story being repeated.
I Want to Take Photo of Cynthia
Cynthia is one of the prettiest girls I have ever seen in my life, the proportion of her legs, arms, the width of her waist and muscles in her back are perfect. The only flaw is her teeth, and is she wanted braces would fix them in less than six months, at age 24 I feel she could easily be a fashion model.
She does not like photos taken of her, and because she is controlling, I have stopped trying, it is not worth the argument. However, I have been trying to explain that it possible she could get a job as model. When she first came to Ghana, she showed me about 10 photos of her in a bikini at some beach, the photos were propped, and had a B movie quality feeling, like they pushed her up against a tree and took a photo, complete with wig.
Now this is the enigmatic part of taking photos of people, she does not want here photo taken, however will carry around 10 photos of herself to show me. There is part of her psyche that wants to have photos, and there is part of her that says no.
I am not good at taking photos of people, I seldom catch the essence of their personality, and if I do, it is by accident. However, since the invention of the digital camera, it has become easy to make accidents happen, I could take 500 photo or more and hope to get 10 excellent photos.
I am not fond of models, or vanity or the idea of promotion of physical beauty, there is a sabotaging effect that occurs when a person is beautiful. When I was younger, I was able to turn on my charm, blue eyes and blond hair when I was young, and get what I want, this stops people from taking you serious, and it enabled me to maneuver and manipulate people.
Cynthia is almost unaware she is beautiful, as best I can see; she does not use her beauty to maneuver people. On the other hand, I am not sure the African man cares much about women, they are more interested in other men, the seem to savor the idea of talking sports and hanging in a group. This is also a British behavior, the men look for the appreciation of men and discount women, I will stop there, and I get enough hate mail.
Well, the bottom line, I am making photo progress, it is possible I can convince her to buy a white bikini in Lome, Togo and allow me take photos on the beach. Her skin is black, I think there is only one level more black skin than her, if she tanned in the sun, she would be charcoal colored. I want her to buy a white bikini and allow me take photos, what a striking contrast.
I see a photo and want to take it, I take photos I see, and I do not take photo unless I see the photo in my minds eye. It is difficult to look at her without seeing a photo, she is constantly pouting and pursing her lips, truly good photos if I could capture the essence. I am not sure if she is too fat for photos or not, she may be 10 pound too thick for photos, she is cut, her muscles sort of bulge out of her clothing. There are people who look awkward in clothing, in many ways this is her, the clothing in Africa is generally used, second hand clothing sent here from Europe and the USA, it is not easy to find proper fitting pants, and people quickly accept what they find.
My life is not a game, and Cynthia’s life is not a game, often readers write me in a tone as if I should or would do anything for money. I know why, because most people will say and do anything for money. 99 percent of writers patronize their readers, try to write what the readers want to hear, and take cliché photos. Vanity and the desire to be famous is horrible, insidious and corrupting element that is growing. I do not approve of people putting 50 photos of themselves on Facebook, this just reeks of self-absorbed, and selfish behavior.
I am reluctant and feel yes sometime and no sometimes, I feel like I have some type of Greek Goddess, an African Queen walking around in the room. However, I do respect her privacy and it is her choice, she does not have a Facebook page, and as best I can sense, she has no desire to start a Facebook page.
What does Cynthia focus on, well she wants four children, three girls and one boy, and she asked me last night,
"Will I be able to cook in Lome?"
She has no desire to travel, she calls me a Nomad, and sort of berates me for roaming around the world, and she does not see travel as a worthwhile pursuit.
I kind of feel as if there is a piece of art in my room walking around, I am not sure if I am supposed to allow the world to see it, or if I am suppose to lock it away, and be selfish. Truly this is here choice, I am just a bystander watching the world walk by.
The United States of West Africa
There is 15-16 nations in West Africa that have formed a union, it is caused ECOWAS, this union is similar to the European Union, it allows people to travel, and I believe work without many restrictions. The majorities use the CFA as currency, however Ghana does not, which to me is foolish self-importance.
This union is important, and you could in a way, see these 15-16 countries as one nation, with many truly anti-progress rules separating them. They all make the Western world get a visa, which hamstrings importation, exportation and investment. Tourist is almost stopped.
I believe that if Ghana allowed a visa on arrival for 90 days, they would increase their investment in the country would double, and their tourism dollars would be five times higher. The government officials could still collect their fee of 100 dollars, and put in their personal pockets, but allow the people to benefit. This applies to all the too silly for words Visa situation of the ECOWAS nations.
The acronym in French is: CEDEAO
It is a union, the benefit to me, is Cynthia can travel between these nations without needing to jump through the Visa hoops. I am presently in a Visa problems, I cannot get a Visa to Nigeria without begging, and if I enter Togo, it is a real possibility I may need to get another Togo Visa, even though I have a multiple entry visa to Togo. I also have a multiple entry Visa to Ghana, and should be able to cross back into Ghana. I do not trust Ghana to respect the Visa. Therefore, I cannot just come and go, they can put me in Visa black hole, I must always allow 15 days of extra days on my Visa, so it needed, I could rush to the Embassy of an adjoining country. I applied in the USA for a three month Visa to Cote d’Ivoire and they gave me a year. I tried to get a six-month visa to Ghana and they gave me three months. I entered from Togo into Ghana, the woman asked me,
"Why do you need to stay longer than 30 days?"
I wanted to say,
"Because I paid for a 90 day Visa."
I told her this long and elongate story, about traveling back and forth to see friends, etc. but in the back of my mind, I paid for a 90 day visa, give me what I paid for, I am not going to live in Ghana.
If you get on the Lonely Planet Thorntree, a forum that allows question, you would be able to realize that length of time for visas is not predictable, a person cannot just plan a multiple country trip across Africa, and travel without thinking about Visa. Truly, there are countries that step on their "D333cks" and other that jump up and down on it.
West Africa jumps up and down on opportunity for investment and tourism dollars, they truly piss into the wind. Writing this could get me banned from Ghana or other countries, however it needs to be said, the people of the country are losing millions of dollars of revenue because of their leaders.
Travel From Cape Coast Ghana to Lome Togo