Third week in Winneba

Right now, we are writing our blog entry at the university cafeteria at the North Campus of UEW, which is called Kams. Because of its central location in Winneba, its AC and its good food, it has turned into our unofficial meeting spot. During these lunch breaks, we catch up on our internships, reflect on our experiences and share how we are feeling both physically and mentally. So far, we have learned that irritation can occur both in our host families as well as at internship schools. And on a very simple note: our digestive systems have some catching-up to do as well 😉

Some favorite Ghanaian dishes (clockwise from bottom left): Groundnut Soup, Eba, Palawa Sauce, Kelewele with Casava flakes, Beans and Kenkey

The last week of our internship has started today. Everything feels so much more familiar than it did two weeks ago. Starting with the morning taxi ride to school, including the negotiation of the price and small talk with the other passengers. It has already become somewhat of a routine. When arriving at school, we greet our colleagues, exchange reports of the weekend, and banter about new hair styles or the most recent gossip in town.

Last week was under the auspices of Ghana’s Independence Day. On March 6th, 1957, Ghana became the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to gain independence from colonial rule. All over town, the students spent days preparing for the march on Independence Day. The big event took place on the field in front of our school, where each school presented their banner while a marching band was playing. A jury voted for the best marching school and many spectators came to watch and celebrate. After the march, we had a conversation with a person who did not want to celebrate the day because of current politics. It was interesting to hear and learn about another perspective than the one that has been the most apparent in other conversations.

This weekend we visited the Assin Manso Slave River Site and the Cape Coast Castle with our buddies. There we learned about the horrors of the Transatlantic Slave Trade and the interconnectedness of Europe’s, America’s and Africa’s history.

It is difficult for us to put the emotions of visiting these sites into words.

For us, experiencing these places once again confirmed the importance of being aware of the past and how it shapes the role we play as visitors from the Global North.

It also stresses the importance of the Tricontinental Teacher Training, since our goal as students partaking in the program from the USA, Ghana and Germany is to meet and learn from each other as equals.

Lastly, the conversations with our buddies are getting deeper and deeper, and we have been able to reflect on our visits to the memorials together. Slowly but surely, we are getting to know our buddies better and are excited for our time together in the Hamburg summer. Conversations about phenomena like transition jackets (Übergangsjacken), public transport and long, mild summer nights add to that excitement, for both us and our buddies. We are already looking forward to the time when the subway rides to the internship schools become a routine for our buddies as the morning taxi rides to school have become one for us. Maybe we will even need Übergangsjacken in June. You never know in Hamburg.

Carlotta & Paula

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