First Impressions

It didn’t take long for me to realize that I wasn’t in Kansas anymore.

As the plane was touching down at Accra airport the giant carcass of a jetliner was lying by the side of the runway. Helluva thing to see while landing, but maybe it was just being cannibalized for parts… Or, perhaps the remains of a misadventure not yet cleared away? Taxing to a stop, there weren’t any other commercial airplanes to be seen, just a fleet of various sized jets bearing the United Nations logo. We deboarded down a flight of stairs onto a steamy tarmac where castoff Korean buses were waiting to deliver us to the terminal and into the hands of immigration officers who either ill temperedly or lackadaisically processed our various documents. One young man waved me through with a shrug although I hadn’t been given and therefore hadn’t filled out and consequently didn’t submit the form that apparently it was his sole job to collect. Welcome to Ghana.


Homeopathic Surgery

Night had already fallen when the motorcycle slowly puttered up to the clinic. It was during the periodic “lights out” that beset the village every 72 hours or thereabouts, so electricity had been shut down until dawn. In the darkness, one could manage to make out three riders dismounting from the bike.

I had only arrived in the village a day or two before, but later I would learn that patients often arrived at the clinic in this manner. They’d be sandwiched between the driver and someone riding shotgun who kept them upright.