AfricaGhanaAccra

The dark side of fishermen

Accra Travel Blog

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Fishing port
        My 2nd day in Ghana began early. The hotels driver, Edmund, and i were to search for the Mauritanian embassy so as to save me some trouble when (if) i arrived there. After clocking up a few miles we lost heart and took a break-neck spin around Accra with plenty of honking and swearing. Some interesting market places, monuments and the colourful dress of the locals kept me interested.
      Driving along the coast i noticed one of the areas of beach that the guide book warns against visiting, day or night. But it looked so interesting that the ' Invincible mindset of the solo traveler' kicked in. So after instructing Edmund to drive down the small cobbled connecting path we got out of our ailing peugeot.

     
 The overwhelming whiff of goat, chicken and human excretions, wrestling with the pong of raw fish left a lasting impression in my nostrils. Unless your legs have the nimbility of the spawn of Fred Astaire and Michael Flatley you should think twice about wearing your best flip-flops here.
      
The first inkling of danger came when Edmund warned me to put the two straps of my bag around my shoulders and to hold onto them at all times. We walked down towards the docked canoe type boats. Some permanently docked and rotting on the beach, others in the process of being repaired which also double as lodgings at night.
Angry fisherman
Here men were tending their nets and hauling ashore the most recent catch. One man even offered to sell me some of his school.   I always feel a bit nervous about taking pictures of people without their permission, and I sure wasn’t going to ask everyone there if it’s okay to do so. So Edmund asks one chap if its okay with him. He says its fine so I start snapping away, trying to focus on the boat already out at sea. This annoys one man who starts to look towards s angrily, but I try to ignore him. He somehow gets it in his head that I am taking  pictures of him. You can clearly see this in my photos.

       After a while we turn on our heels and head back towards the car, when a large man starts shouting at us and calling us over to him from his wood and straw shelter. He claims to be the master of the dock and he looks pretty agitated. Edmund, who looks genuinely scared, starts talking to him in a local language while i try and make sense of whats happening.
The 'master' claimed that we were intruding on private fishing ground and that we must pay a tax. He also tells us the the 'Karachi' (or the 'Big Man) of Ghana has been informed about us and is on his way down to the docks right now. Apparently everybody fears the karachi. Endumd, now sweating, explains that we are going to find my friend Peter (non existent) who will lend us the money, then return tomorrow with his tax...............

      
With that we all shook hands, with that clicking movment that i love, and parted ways. We never did pay the tax.
     
      

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Jamal1280 says:
It's good to read stuff like this. It should help others who travel to this place (or similar places) be more prepared to deal with problems. Thanks!
Posted on: Oct 07, 2010
Stigen says:
Scary stuff..
Posted on: Oct 07, 2010
derekbilldaly says:
Haha I love that hand shake clicking thing! They do it a lot in Africa and its something that I had almost forgot about until reading this blog, cheers!!
Posted on: May 17, 2009
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Fishing port
Fishing port
Angry fisherman
Angry fisherman
In the refugee camp... Two of the …
In the refugee camp... Two of the…
Taxi cab
Taxi cab
They really love me!
They really love me!
Accra Sights & Attractions review
A fishing port in Accra.
Even though it is one of the areas of beach that the guide book warns against visiting day or night it is still worth a brief visit. It is a small a… read entire review
Accra
photo by: qophys