I came to Ghana for the first time in September 1993, attending the University of Ghana at Legon as an “occasional student” (their term, not mine), spending as much time as possible with musician friends at the National Theatre and learning what it meant to live in Ghana from my neighborhood, Osu.
Twelve years later, I’m enjoying reading the blog of a new friend who’s just returned from Nigeria to start medical school at the University of Ghana. Just a few days ago, David Mends was wondering why we blog. Three days later, he’s got the beginnings of an answer, and an interesting post to go with it:
“We blog because we are driven by our very nature to add to Mankind’s store of information.”
Very interested to see Accra through David’s eyes in the coming weeks and months. And while he’s already refused to send me takeout food from my favorite Ghanaian fast food joint (from a recent comment: “Don’t you
know that Papaye fried rice and chicken is a national resource? I’ll be arrested for divulging military secrets and for industrial espionage!”), he’s helping me remember one of the most exciting and wonderful years of my life. Thanks, David, and welcome to the Blogosphere.
Just read your message from days ago. The answer is a big NO. Appiah is quite a common last name among Ashantis. I do play soccer here in Chicago though – pick-up games (I went to the Univ of Chicago), and lived the first decade and a half of my life in Ghana.
Good to be here Andy. Sorry about the chicken but my hands are tied.
What on earth did UG mean by “occasional student”? In my case I’m a “foreign student” and am paying a fee that turned my dad white at the gills when he heard it.
Occasional students are allowed to pay their fees “occasionally”, no?
David – I was in Ghana on a Fulbright scholarship. This meant that the US government paid me a modest stipend to live in Ghana, and that I was allowed to sit in on a few classes at Legon, but couldn’t actually sit for a degree. Hence, the occasional student thing. No money changed hands, but I had no real status at the U either. Didn’t much matter, as the U was on strike the entire year I was living in Ghana… :-)