How could I not resit to travel to Ivory Coast for my Earthday (19th June), only 1 hour plane journey from Accra to Abidjan. A peaceful 5 days of relaxation at a nice villa in Du Plateau – A time to brush up on my French also.
Ivory Coast is a country of western sub-Saharan Africa. It borders Liberia and Guinea in the west, Mali and Burkina Faso in the north, Ghana in the east, and the Gulf of Guinea. Yamoussoukro is the nation’s political capital while Abidjan is its economic capital and the largest city. The Ivory Coast – also known as Cote d’Ivoire and named due to the export in Ivory – was a French Colony until 1960. But, after it gained independence, it fell into civil war in 2002. A population of 27 million. Although official language is French, there are at least 78 local languages. The main ethnic groups: Akan, Gour, Krou and Mandé. Known as the world largest cocoa producers.
Ghanaian friend Rita was my companion on the trip. Although we both new an Ivorian person for inspiration, we managed to navigate our way and chose destinations based on research we did a few weeks ahead. After a relaxing night in the villa we first checked out the arts and crafts centre where my friend Sanda has a shop.
So being in West Africa, it was not surprising to see and taste similar food. The local Ivorian dish that was the meal of the day is Attieke (similar to Gari) and Alloco (fried plantain) served with fish or meat. We asked to be taken to an Ivorian chop bar, but ended up in a Ghanaian restaurant that had just opened, very typical with the sound of pounding fufu in the background.
There are many picturesque spots especially by the water which we took advantage by travelling a 2 hour journey to a coastal resort town of Assinie. Sailing down the calm river in a wooden boat, passing local fishermen, beautiful houses, tropical trees and fauna. Spending the rest of the day on a beach island with food, drink, sun and cool breeze.
It is the rainy season, but that did not stop us from having a nice time and making the most of my Earthday throughout the weekend. In the afternoon had a spa treatment, chilled then went for dinner at an exclusive place called Le Debarcadere overlooking the river.
On the Sunday the museum was closed, but the artifacts, collective memorable and rustic surroundings in Bushman Café was like being in a museum. The roof top painted wall with West African Adinkra symbols, which are very prominent in Ghana.
The strawberry gateau cake was sweet and went down a treat as we danced the night with a mix of old school, reggae, Ivorian v Ghanaian beats. Giving thanks to our host and all the guests that we met throughout.
Thanks to the Most High and the Ancestors for leading me into another year of wisdom, peace, health and happiness.
Bless Sister E (Naa Dzamah)