Spanista » Self Care Rituals, Reflections & Resources for Joyful Living by Ginny Shiverdecker

Night Time Arrival City of Accra Ghana Africa Chapter 2


Dear Wellness Seekers,

Night Time Arrival City of Accra Ghana Africa Chapter 2 is the story of Spanista’s humanitarian trip to Ghana to build AbodShelters as housing and medical facilities with Kingdom Cares International. My host Doug and his son DJ missed their flight in the US so they will arrive the next day. As Executive Director of AbodShelters Foundation this is my first trip to Ghana to build Abod homes.

As I exit the Accra airport with my bags in tow I am clearly a novelty to the locals who are standing and seated in an open air waiting area. As I walk into the crowd, I am approached by taxi drivers – typical of any airport in the world the local drivers all speak English well. I politely decline with words of respect. Scanning the crowd for a 6 foot 4 inch man with a sign saying ‘Ginny’ I see Michael with a broad smile. We greet one another warmly. We make friends immediately. He takes my bags and guides me to a parking lot across the street. I inhale to notice the aroma’s of deep rich earth, humidity and something new I cannot describe. An unique smell different form any other I have ever encountered.

We navigate to the car over some rough terrain – my first impression is the infrastructure is unfinished – without seeing anything the word that comes to mind is RAW!  While it is dark, yet you can see just enough – there is hustle of activity that feels chaotic as people come and go. Angry words emerge for a military guard with a rifle as someone makes a wrong move – he pushes him to get him in line – we carry on to load the car. Darkness makes everything seem more ominous than it is.

Michael drives through the pay station and we head out to the hotel. We head out of the Accra airport to see signs of a the city, the capital of Ghana, emerge with tall buildings and billboards – yet the road eventually turns from pavement to dirt with pot holes we miss and no dividing lines. You drive where you need to barely missing passing cars. This is unnerving. Darkness is everywhere – people are walking and biking along the road as their own risk. I see makeshift wood huts juxtaposed with larger buildings. Many are left unfinished.


We turn corners taking winding roads lines with shacks. There are no road signs in Accra. Now we are in a local neighborhood unlike any I have ever stayed in before. People of on the streets in small clusters enjoying their night life – it is after 10 pm. The locals are dressed well – yet they live in very small shacks of left over materials with dirt floors. Michael says we are now in a place called the Estates. Hmmmm. Really? Guess things are relative. We finally pull up to a building that looks solidly built and drive behind a gate that gets locked. It’s the Hotel we will stay in for tonight. I know when I walk in I have left creature comforts back home. It appears clean  – we head to my room – lights in the bathroom do not work, they get fixed quickly. The bed looks fine – I brought my own pillowcase. No TV, no wi-fi. Glad to have a place to lay my head and freshen up a bit after 24 hours of travel. I have a full bottle of water to get me through to the next day. I discover he shower has no warm water, just cold. I would learn this would be the rule for the week. Time to adapt.

I unpack just what I need. Michael is staying in the room next to me – says if I need him to pound on the wall. All good. I try to close my eyes – music is coming from the bathroom window. People are talking outside. I opt to keep the bathroom light on all night so I can have the comfortable breeze blow through. At 6:30 am we will head back to the airport to pick up Doug and DJ.  I close my eyes and pray for a couple of hours of rest. There is a big week ahead.

Night Time Arrival City of Accra Ghana Africa Chapter 2 is the first taste of what is to come. I am full of anticipation and welcome the expansive impact of this humanitarian trip. Spanista is ready for learning more about another type of Self Care called giving back and trusting humanity. 

Come back again for Chapter 3 of Humanitarian Travel Diary to Ghana.

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Back to TopEmail PostTweet PostSubscribe