At this point, itís pretty much a Pavlovian reaction: I fall asleep within minutes of getting into the van. As pictures my amused cotravelers take clearly show me sleeping sitting up with my head kinds just hanging forward, itís not like Iím getting especially comfortable. And Iím getting more than enough sleep outside of the car... I guess itís just plain old narcolepsy.
Iím doing some serious sleeping today. We drive from Kumasi to Navrongo with few stops, making for some really long naps.
A highlightís the small town market we stop in. Greeted by a group of Ghanaians carrying various items on their heads, we wander around the few shops selling food that looks at all appetizing. Strangest is a sign imploring locals not to lynch women accused of witchcraft because the accused could be their mothers, but the stick of wood Cujo the van driver talked me into using as a toothbrush tasted horribly bitter enough to also be noteworthy. I hated it, but a group of little Ghanaians laughed at the white guy trying to give himself oral splinters. Then again, maybe they just wanted more sweets: handing out hard candy made us a huge hit here, with kids crowding their hands into the vanís windows to get the goodies as soon as we start the motion of handing them out.
Another interesting break from hard work at napping was a stop at the University for Development Studies. A multi-campus school with a VSAT internet link only at the administration building, weíre deploying labs at some of the satellite campuses. Theyíll hopefully eventually have net access, but, without thousands of dollars in microwave wireless networking equipment, we canít help them with that aspect of the setup. Anyways, whatís impressive is the turnout for a couple of Penn students: the head of the university and the deans of most of its schools are there, shaking hands with us and asking if we have any questions. They even grab old chairs while we sit at the conference table. Sure hope we work up to at least a little of their expectations...
We wrap up the day by finally making it to our hotel, which makes me wish I were camping so I at least wouldnít have had any expectations. Weíre starting to really rough it, by which I mean we donít have hot water, there are holes in our roomís screen door, and the bedsheets look like they havenít been changed within the last several years. With big portions of redred, a beans and sauce dish, and ABC, my new choice for best Ghanaian brew, the food and drink have actually gotten better while accommodations plunged downhill. Itís almost like Iím in the Third World or somethingÖ