Friday, March 23, 2012

trip journal; 3-20-2012, shopping day!

Today I had a great time with the B family. It's their first time in Ghana so of course they needed to do a bit of shopping! Even though this is trip 13 for me (I think?), I also always need a shopping day! This trip in particular, I got to purchase some special items to be used for future AAI fundraising.

First thing we headed to the Art and Culture Center. Some families do really well with the heat and high pressure of the place. Others do not. To start with though, I always head to the side of the market to visit my friends at “No Food For Lazy Man.” In particular, Eric is my friend. I joke that he is my Ghana husband, since my husband's name is Eric. Above is a photo of he and I. =-) I always bring families to these guys, who are drum makers. They graciously played a while for us, before giving the B family a mini beginning drum lesson. Of course after that comes the part where the B family buys a drum!

Next we headed down the row a bit further to Anthony's shop. He and his “brothers” make Bolga-style baskets. Since they are the makers (not the sellers) they gave us whole-sale price on some baskets and fans that are sold within the market itself.

The thing about this market is that one guy always leads you to the next, to the next, to the next. We had to make a few more obligatory stops, where I purchased a few more items I needed. By this time we needed a break from the pressure so we headed to the front of the market to buy a drink and rest a bit. Whew!

Next we headed to the dress shop just behind the drink area. Set prices in there, but they are pretty fair. I bought a shirt and a few sets of earrings. I love buying earrings in Ghana. My ears don't mind cheap earrings, and I love all the cool dangly beaded and wood carved designs I can find here!

From the dress shop it was back to the wash rooms, which lead us to the very back of the market and a few shops in that area. This trip seemed to keep us in the parameters. I bought a cool rattle and mini mortar and pestle.

Last stop at this market was for clothes, where I purchased a pretty dress for Taevy, a dress for a friend, and a shirt for Bright. I also ended up buying a shirt for our driver (at his request)!

By this time it was WELL past time for air-conditioning and Frankie's! We enjoyed our first (and last) diet soda of the trip. I had an oh-so-yummy pizza.

Sufficiently cooled down, we headed back out to walk from Frankie's to Global Mama's. The best deal of the day was at a little stall across the street from Frankie's where they sold us jewelry and soccer jersey's at unbeatable prices right off the bat!

By the time we got to Global Mama's we were really ready to cool down with the A/C but it was not to be had. Actually, we ended up sweating there more than anyplace else, because the power was out and there is no moving air in the place! Still, I managed to find a super cute dress and earrings for Kendi as well as some fun things for AAI fundraising.

It was a fun day. It was a very HOT day! Actually, I was sunburned through my 100 SPF water-proof sunscreen! All in a day's “work!” =-)

Here are some items we purchased and the prices paid. You may do better (or worse) during your trip!

Sachel Bags--10 cedis

Large Drum with carrying case (13 inch drum head)--115 cedis

Dresses at culture market-- 25 cedis (these have gone up)
Traditional Shirt at market, child --15 cedis

Mask -- 5 cedis

Earrings -- 2 -3 cedis

Wood nativies -- 55 cedis

Stained Wooden Bowls -- 10 cedis
Oware/Mancala Set --12 cedis
Paintings--15 cedis

Small Mortar and Pestle -- 7 cedis

Bracelets -- 1-7 cedis

Bolga Baskets --35 cedis (these were the type that usually sell for 70)

Unity Men/Hugging Men carvings -- 18 cedis

Soccer Jersey-- 15-20 cedis