Second Loans and the Ominous Feeling of the End

3-23-10

Second Loans and the Ominous Feeling of the End

I have a week left in Ghana and I am not sure how so much time has passed. I keep considering how much I will miss the people here. I have grown very attached to several of the women from the Microfinance program. It is starting to sink in that I may never see them again. Hopefully I will remember to take lots of pictures of them and get everyone’s contact information. I have also started to realize that my way of life is about to abruptly change. First in Botswana where I am told the pace is much faster and people are less friendly, and then when I return to the States I am sure there will be reverse culture shock to contend with.

Anyhow, at the office another group of women came into the office to receive their second loans. This meant that I had to learn on the fly everything that Justine had set up before she traveled and make some new documents to indicate the change in interest rate and length of repayment (the second loans are 100 to 200 GHC for 6 months at a rate of 20%; the only exception is Madam Aisha’s group who will repay in 5 months so that they are finished before school fees are due). It took at least two hours to get all of the documents and forms made, printed, filled out, and thumb printed by the women, and by the end of the day I was exhausted.

In the evening our original plan was to go to the University of Ghana’s botanical garden but we realized that by the time we got there it would almost be time to get back. Not to mention we were both tired. So Meggin, Laralyn, and I watched a movie in our apartment which had no electricity. Then the battery died so we made food by headlamp and talked for a bit before heading to bed.

By the way, a fetish ceremony is one in which shrines are worshipped and rituals practiced… not a kinky sexual encounter.

Ghanaian Travel Tip #72: I have found that Ghanaians are intimidated by foreigners. If you take the time to say hello and ask them their name or where they are from, you will begin to form a friendship with them.

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