My Interaction at the Fishing Village
It was a heart-warming and heart-wrenching interacting with the Ghanaians in Cape
Coast. The immediate connection I made with the local people solidified my connectivity
to Ghana and Africa as a whole. While walking through the fish market one of the
kids name Emanuel, came up to me greeted me with a hug and said,” I am happy you
are here in Ghana, this is your home, this is your heart, and you are my brother”.
His spoken words whether they were bogus or genuine touched me a way I will never
forget. Our acquaintance soon developed into a conversation. I learned he was in
school and was paying for it by doing “work” in the fish market. Since we were advised
not to give out money to children I gave him a pen and some pencils to hopefully
encourage him to stay in school. Before we left the Fish Village Emanuel
left me with a simple gift that I consider priceless. The gift he left me with is
how much people are alike, more so than different.
My Interaction at the Specialty Shops
Shopping at the woodcarving village in Kumasi was a revitalizing and stressful experience.
Every shop I passed someone would persistently ask me to visit their shop and buy
something. One person said he would give me a good price because of my hair.
Although I identify myself as a Christian many people of Ghana label me as a Rastafarian
because of my hair style. Ghanaians frequently would call me “Rasta Boy” or “Rast”
and give me a special handshake that
symbolized respect. I would have never suspected my “Locs”(dreadlocks)
could define me into religious category so distinctly. This label provided me with
a unique bond in relating to shop owners and petty sellers. This interaction also
signified to me that things I do as a black man in America that people sometimes
take for style such as my hairstyle, were used before as a symbol for a religious
group called the Rastafarians. Henceforth here especially the younger generations
do not know what that means.