Three months ago, we touched down in a hot and humid Accra. The night we arrived, we were greeted by a huge African thunderstorm. It was almost as if Mother Nature was welcoming us back onto African soil.
It’s been a whirlwind few weeks since then – looking at potential apartments/houses, figuring out where to buy what, getting acquainted with the various areas and neighbourhoods of Accra and meeting new people. So setting up a new blog to document our Ghanaian adventure had to take a backseat. But as things slowly start to fall into place, and now that I finally feel like we’re starting to settle in, I hope to get back to regular blogging.
It’s hard to explain to those who have never upped and moved countries exactly what a big deal it is. I am always amazed that people ask me things like “So, have you found a job yet/have you found a house already”. I honestly don’t think they get the enormity of the situation when it comes to an international relocation. You literally land in a country you’ve never visited before and have to figure out everything from scratch – such as where to buy groceries, which cellular network to get connected to, how the local currency works, how much things cost etc. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Let’s not forget about the administrative issues associated with moving to a foreign country. But luckily, with this being our second expatriation, I’ve found this time around I’ve been able to draw on the learnings from our Swiss move. We have also been fortunate enough to have a fanstastic network of people to lean on from the get-go and the expat community here is really supportive.
One thing I did differently this time around, is I jumped straight into the various social activities/groups on offer and accepted every invitation that came my way. After all, the only way you will meet people and find your ‘tribe’ is if you put yourself out there. I have already clicked with a few amazing people (something that took me a bit longer in Switzerland) and I have a good feeling about the connections I’ve made so far, in this relatively short space of time.
Of course, there are days I miss Switzerland (funnily enough, I don’t miss South Africa, although I miss my family), but I find that there is something beautiful, positive and uplifting to discover each day here in Ghana. I see things that make me smile, I encounter people who get me thinking about life and I am continually reminded to be thankful and grateful for my blessings. It’s almost as if it was time to leave behind the postcard-perfect world of Switzerland and re-connect with a more authentic version of reality.
I look forward to our new adventure, to learning more about Ghana and of course, myself. And sharing some of my experiences, stories and photos with you!