So yes, two blogs in one day, I am procrastinating a little bit. I have been trying to finish a report for the past week, but all the figures are just merging into one big figure. It was supposed to be done by Monday, but with the workload I have had I said to my boss he will have to sack me of kill me but it just isn’t happening. He hasn’t said anything since, and I have looked at this report ever since, and then doing anything else but this.
Two nights ago I was on my way to the car park, it was very late about 8.30, I bought a loaf of bread and I was walking to the car hoping for a knight in shining armour to whisk me away, well drive me home anyway. I jumped out of this fantasy when a lady approached me, she thought I was French and made some feeble attempt to speak it, even I could do better, but that’s beside the point. She starts her tale of how she has no money, I had exactly 2 cedis on me and well not being funny I wanted to use that to buy my gin and lime on the way home. I said sorry, I don’t have any money, she started begging somewhat (well it was a whiney please anyway, not a full on hold the leg type thing), when I said I used the last money I had to buy this bread. She then says to me ‘so you call yourself a Christian’. I am thinking hang on luv, if I was intending to change my mind, that disappeared with that remark. So I told her, even in the bible it says that you shouldn’t give away what you don’t have, and besides she doesn’t know my situation, just because she sees me going into my car she shouldn’t make assumptions. She then asked for a slice of my bread, bloody cheek, after insulting me she then asked for my bread. I told her there’s plenty of people around, she should ask one of them. “I don’t know them” she said, you don’t know me but you were bold enough to come and ask me for money. She then says that I insulted her. The cheek of it, for me, if you are genuinely down and out, and I have it, I will give, but these people are professional beggers, even if I had offered her my bread she would have told me she wants the money. When I get up early in the morning, she is probably in bed, really, and then to throw the Christian card.
Does it mean that to be a good Christian you have to go around all day every day, just dishing out money to people. Come on, if I did that, then I am just working to feed the masses. It’s tough, there is poverty in Ghana, but this was an able bodied person, had she even come and ask me for a job I would be much more obliging. There is a guy who gives my car a once over from time to time, he’s done a job for me, if I didn’t give him something than that would be hard fisted, however if I don’t know you from Adam or Eve, sorry, I work to pay for my life, I don’t owe you anything so don’t come with that nonsense.
The second instance was yesterday, the Niger guy, he told me that I have a good heart. I start rolling my eyes waiting to see how much he was going to ask for. He then says, two ladies are jealous of me, one because of my smile and one because of my luck. We then had a very lengthy conversation about the word ‘luck’. I didn’t quite get it the first time, I thought he said ‘locks’, and I’m thinking why would she be jealous of my locks. I have my hair twisted at the moment and it looks like dreadlocks, but it is due for removal as it is looking rather picky so got very confused, that this person must be very shabby looking to be jealous of my hair. So I finally got it that he said luck and the man said that these two ladies had bound me up in spirit and they had binded my period so it would now I don’t know if he was saying that it was irregular or painful, but I kind of lost interested as I wouldn’t even talk about my menstral cycle with my closest guy friend let alone this stranger. Plus he said this was all over a man, and well as we all know I have been single for quite a while so was just waiting for the bill so he would get lost.
So he finishes after the whole period thing and says if I give him 10 Ghana cedis he will tell me more. I thought hang on a minute, that’s a bit steep, so I said it’s alright, I believe in God not man, so if anything I will leave it to God to deal with. Would this man go away, no, he just wasn’t taking no for an answer. So I give him 1 cedi and say, that’s because I have a good heart not because I could care less about what you have to say. He then asks me to buy him a coke. Another case of bloody cheek, I didn’t call you here to tell me stories, neither did I ask you to do any job for me. If I wanted to pay someone to tell me nice stories, I could give my mum a tenner and listen to her all day. So I tell him to use that 1 cedi to buy the coke then, he says, no that is for food. Like really, e be me where I born um? (Did I give birth to him that is). The goat really got on my nerves and I just shewed him away.
This is the thing I find amazing in this country, people begginng, and I would say 7 or 8 times out of 10 these are people who have travelled from Mali, Liberia or Niger, why come to Ghana to beg. It is hard to get a job yes, but the reason why I am harsh is that manual labour is not that difficult to come by. Even if you knocked on my door and said you would like to wash my clothes I would much rather arrange a price and then give you a top up once in a while I would respect that than you think that just because I have I should give you some. Sorry, I have never gone up to a stranger to beg money, neither has a complete stranger given me a handout, I work hard for my money, at least make an attempt at getting a job and let me feel sorry for you a bit.
The old man behind the bar said that one day someone stopped him to say he lived on the other side of Accra and he came to visit his friend but the friend was in a meeting and needs money to go back. When you got up in the morning and decided to see your friend, was I part of the decision making process. So why bring me into your wahala now?
Well I better get back to that report or else it is going to be a while before I get home tonight.