|Emil Ampong (aka World Peace) with his keyhole garden|
as i prepare to move once again, this time from Ghana to Kenya, my thoughts and actions are centered upon those souls with whom i have been blessed to meet and know well. despite the difficulties i faced living here, and the challenges which came from everyday life in a developing country, i met many beautiful gems of souls who i will miss and remember with gratitude and joy. these souls enabled my journey in Ghana to be woven with a thread of joy..
|from left to right: Jude, Magdelene, Emil, Eunice & Gideon|
|saying goodbye to the Kayanja family|
DUNK, the NGO dedicated to improving the lives of kids through basketball. we started bringing the kids and enjoying the community spirit of our boys playing basketball with the local kids who were part of the program. those experiences are my favorite because it's all about relationship building, character development and having fun together.
looking back at how we felt limited in terms of traveling throughout Ghana i can see how it benefited us; we were able to develop closer relationships with our neighbors because we were around all the time. i would take a walk to buy groceries and hang out. before long i was known as 'aunty Pamela' instead of 'obruni' (white person). i became a part of the neighborhood. this is where most of the acts of service to God were shared -- singing with children, building trust with the jr. youth, playing soccer with everyone, bringing baked goodies to share, offering devotions in our home, listening to stories and the hardships of life, and developing a garden to grow food. i enjoyed driving and riding my bike on the terracotta-colored dirt roads, buying local dishes on the side of the road, watching the goats play, having children run up to our car window and give us a pounded fist with a bright smile, and being surrounded by beautiful patterns on clothes and in the stores all throughout the city.
these memories are what i'll remember most about Ghana..
|enjoying academic success of our children with the Kayanja family at the BIS graduation|
|Nwando, our next door neighbor from Nigeria, and our guards, Melvyn & Uncle Fred|
|kids building a keyhole garden|
|hanging clothes to dry|
|inside a ripe cocoa pod|
|Ama with Sholomite sleeping on her lap|
|Augustin, our driver, and Uncle Fred, our guard|
|sister Grace and her family - they owned the local grocery store down the road|
|Boadi Ampong - last time together saying goodbye, in front of the maize field|
|Emil being silly wearing his sister's glasses|
|we shared such a kinship; it was very hard to say goodbye to Monica|
|Joshua Ampong, one of the cutest boys in the world :)|
|Gideon, our first neighbor friend who became part of our family|
|Eric and Joshua on the compound wall where they live|
|little Joshua in his jammies feeling proud of their keyhole garden|
|Monica showing me what was growing in the garden|
|Emil took care of Joshua with kindness and joy all of the time|
|Catherine Ampong getting her hair braided|
|just before leaving Accra|
|our last hugs|