- South Africa
- United Kingdom
- Burkina Faso
Submitted by rootsinafrica on Fri, 18/07/2008 - 17:38.
On arrival in
The next morning Stewart set off to the mechanic, who managed to not only give Stan a full service, but found the fault with and repaired the diff lock, which had not been working since Brazzaville, and even found the time for some rudimentary panelbeating to the damaged wheel arch, a legacy of the road from Cameroon to Nigeria.
That afternoon we arranged for our
After handing in our visa applications the next morning, we had a few days before we could pick them up and leave for Burkina Faso, and so on the recommendation of Petra, we headed west for a 2 ½ hour drive along the coast, where we booked into Anomabo Beach Resort, a series of chalets set among hundreds of palm trees just off the beach, with a beautiful raised restaurant built overlooking the beach. A real tropical paradise if there is one!!! Contact them on 042 91562 or 021 221111. They also offer camping and the price for a chalet that sleeps 2 is $38 per night during the week and $50 over the weekend. Well worth it as it is clean, great bathrooms and one of the few places that are actually on the beach.John the surf is waiting for you
Before we visited the coastal
castles, however, we visited Kakum
National Park, about 35 km inland from
A guide threaded us through the forest path, giving us some historical information about the Park and the walkway. The canopy walk itself was quite amazing, although the lack of animal and bird life in the canopy, testimony to the continued problem of poaching, was disappointing.
We then retraced our steps down to the coast and headed to the village of Elmina to see the castle, one of the well known slave trade landmarks, now a museum in rememberance of the slave trade.Originally built by the Portuguese in the early 1600s, then taken over by the Dutch who used it for over 200 years to protect their trade routes, and as a prison and market for the slaves shipped out of Ghana, and finally sold to Britain after slavery was abolished and the Netherlands could no longer justify the expense of its occupation.
The castle and the oath the locals took to ensure such attrocities will never happen again
As an architectural site, the Castle, named St Georges castle by the British, is truly remarkable. However, with the informative and interesting tour guide spelling out its notorious history of slavery and subjugation, we left with a sense of sadness at the horrors fellow human beings inflicted on each other at that time. This was even more evident as our group consisted mostly of African-Americans who were visibly affected by the brutality of the history.
We then visited the Castle at the Cape Coast, the English equivalent of the Elmina castle during the slave trade, but as Stewart did not have the stomach to revisit the horror of the slavery, we had a meal at a nearby restaurant, wandered through the quaint town of Cape Coast (discovering a magnificent bookshop, Black Star Bookstore - as well as Global Mama's a “Fair Trade” clothing and trinket store), and then headed back to Anomabo.
We spent the next day lazing
on the beach, and replanning our route through Africa and Europe so as to make it to
We have no idea what lies ahead, all we know is that we have learned to let go and follow the path that we need to follow. The where and how will become clear as long as we open our spirits and listen, not only with our ears, but most importantly with our souls.
It is not always easy to let go of the past, but once you succeed, even in a small way, you open yourself to new experiences and make them your own, and they become your present. We have taken the first few steps on this journey and must continue to the end, wherever that will be. At times it is extremely hard, especially for me being an eternal home maker and always wanting to be part of my sons’ lives, but for now, this is the path I must follow.
We all have “giving up” moments in our journey (as per Paolo Coelho in “The Zahir”) and believe me; I had many on this trip. I also know I will have many more in the future, but what is important is to continue after that, to take what is good, start afresh and move forward.
We are looking forward in sharing the rest of our journey with you and value your loving support.