The Hide Out
15.09.2008 - 17.09.2008
Upon the nocturnal surprises we agreed without hesistation to head for The Hide Out for recreation and calm of body
and mind. The Hide Out was a little beach resort on one of Ghana's best and most secluded beaches. To get there we spend a day in boiling tro-tro's, and noisy chaotic road junctions with the only stop at the slave fort at Cape Coast. Here we could witness the horrible conditions under which slaves had been kept at the forts, and there was no doubt that the guide tried his best to give us Europeans a guilty conscience by giving a very black and white (forgive this expression) interpretation of the slave trade. He completely failed to mention other facets of the slave trades, such as the fact that it was the African tribes that waged some very brutal wars on each other and established organized slave expeditions in order to capture and sell other African tribes as slaves to the Europeans, all in exchange for some of the best European goods: guns and liquor. Or such as the fact, that when the Europeans began discussing the abolition of slavery, some of the biggest opponents of this idea were the plantation owners in the Americas and the tribal chiefs of Africa. Of course none of this should ever be used to excuse the European and American brutal robbing of about 20 million of this continent's strongest and brightest.
As the sun set we had finally found our way from the sad history of the West African coast to the present day beach resort, the Hideout. We spent two days at this very pleasant spot, canoeing in the nearby river, strolling up the endless coast, and playing in the vigourous waves of the Gulf of Guinea. We visited the small fishing village close to the resort, and were invited to a drumming ceremony with dance and palm wine liquor in the evening, which effectively burned away any potential parasites that we might have consumed.
At sun rise the idyllic and happy atmosphere dissappeared for a moment, when a man came running with his 16 year old unconscious niece on his bag from a smaller village further down the beach. She died the same morning - perhaps from cholera we were told. However, such incidents are everyday life here, and the men we talked to did not seem to take much notice, but were more interested in convincing Regitse, that she should find a Danish woman for them to marry. When she tried to decline their idea by explaining that Danish women want to fall in love and not be forced into love, they just said she could give her girlfriends their phone number, and then they promised to send the girl an sms before the marriage ... Apparently, they never quite got the point!