Goodbye. I have been saying it a lot recently. Today’s, thankfully, will be the last for a few weeks. Rous, the last intern from my previous job will be somewhere over the Sahara as I finish this blog.
Maybe it is the length of time I have been here, or maybe it is because it is nearing the end of the European academic summer holidays but it feels like I am being abandoned! Looking back through my previous blogs (including the one called “friends”) it is telling that only Rob and Miriam are left out of my original group of expat mates. I have said goodbye to seven good friends in four weeks.
I came to Ghana on the last day of March, fresh faced and with open eyes, just as others like Jasmin (who was one of those who I went to Green Turtle Lodge with over Easter) were already mentally on the aeroplane home. The revolving door of interns coming and going still remains as it ever has. The big difference is me.
Whilst my mind is not at home, I am loosing my appetite for an atmosphere akin to a perpetual fresher’s week; nervous strangers determined to make friends with anyone who will have them. I also can't take the same trivial introductions. What are you called? Where are you from? What are you doing here? How long for? Have you been to Ghana before?
Sure it’s tiring. It’s sometimes sad. But it is the reality of the situation. It can also be very positive experience. It is making me more aware of the need to live in the moment and savour the good times. It has presented me with a unique opportunity to meet interesting people from all over the world who would otherwise pass me by. It also makes one realise who is and who is not important to you back home.
So as I say goodbye to those of you reading who have left Ghana, it is also a time to say thank you.
Like all expats I am in the revolving door edging further towards the exit sign. When I do take my leave, most likely sometime in the autumn, I will be wiser than when I came in.