Justin, who is half Ghanaian, has done a beautiful job of incorporating his culture into his speaking business. On the 8th day in Ghana, he worked with a local film crew to record footage for a documentary he is creating about the making of the djembe drum.
It was an honor to be a part of the process and have this unique experience. He filmed the first part of the video outside of his parents beautiful home. Then we headed to a set of shops where he captured footage of drums and purchased miniature drums that he gives out at his presentations.
Then we headed to the Art Center.
On one side, it was wide open and Justin and the film crew captured drummers and the making of the drum. And got to play the drums and do one his favorite things, dance.
On the other side, it looked like a huge flea market but with beautiful African garments, jewelry, carving and much more. Justin’s stepmother, Mama Helen, took me over to purchase souvenirs, and boy did I need her help. Most of the vendors spoke English, but Mama Helen speaks both English and Tri, the native language. And her negotiation skills were impeccable. Many of the items were even being made on the spot, like these young men making backpacks. I bought dresses, skirts, bracelets, shot glasses, wood carvings, and oh, waist beads! It was a bit chaotic yet beautiful experience. I even met a sweet young lady named Sylvia who reminded me of my line sister Sylvia who had passed away.
After the souvenir and drum-making adventure, we all had lunch at the restaurant next to the Art Center. We enjoyed more chicken, Jollof rice, and plantains which were the staple of our diet in Ghana.
It was pretty interesting seeing this “Uncle Samish” image/sign in the restaurant. Probably a whole lot of truth to the message.
When we left, we made a quick stop at Woodin for Justin to get more modern African shirts.
During our time in Ghana, we went all day and all night. After sweating all day outside in the beautiful African heat, we showered and changed and headed back out. This time we enjoyed live music at 233 Jazz.