“Do you have anything with rice or meat” – You, when you go to any restaurant.
1. First things first: You may love the food the rest of the world has to offer, but you’ll miss the waakye, pounded fufu, gob3 or fresh kenkey more than you could’ve imagined.
And there’s just nothing to replace it.
2. You’ll soon have two names: The correctly pronounced one your parents gave you, and whatever the heck garbled nonsense non-Ghanaians call you.
3. You’ll constantly crave hot ‘hausa koko and koose/mansa’ and no “cereal” or “coffee” will satisfy your breakfast.
4. Despite being surrounded by all manner of exotic choices, you’ll miss our perfect home-grown drinks.
5. People know you come from a land of diverse cultures and languages, so you’re bound to get a lot of questions.
Do you celebrate Christmas?
6. And a loooooot of those questions will test your patience.
No, I don’t “speak African” and I never rode an elephant to school nor did I grow up on a tree – you stupid m*********.
7. When you start speaking pidgin or any of our local languages, you’ll be looked at like you’re crazy.
8. But you’ll reserve the right to resort to speak your Twi/Ga/Hause because nothing else feels quite as good when you insult someone in it.
“Mo de3 m’agyimi ooo”.
9. The “authentic” Ghanaian palm-wine that they sell abroad will never taste as good as the same thing does at home.
10. Going to a baseball or basketball game will never feel the same as going to see Hearts or Kotoko.
11. In fact, no one will feel as passionately about football as you do, leaving you watching important matches alone in your room / with your two other African friends.
“Let’s catch the game today?”
“Sure, the Lakers are playing, right?”
“Never mind, I actually meant the African Cup”
12. You should prepare yourself for all kinds of weather that isn’t just blistering heat.
13. Sorry to break the news to you, but you’re going to have to refine your driving skills, because they actually have rules in other countries.
14. You’re going to come to the sad realisation that everything costs a small fortune and you’re destined to be broke forever.
Top it off with having to send money home to your family.
15. Skyping with your parents will probably take the whole day, because
1) they take forever to get it to work, 2) they then have a billion questions to ask.
Do they have fufu there? Has it snowed yet?
16. You’ll often get asked why your English is so good, and will never know what to say.
17. No matter what song you hear or what club you find yourself in. Your first reaction is:
18. You’ll be all pumped for any opportunity to rock your traditional Ghanaian clothes.
Yeah, you know the exact same clothes that you thought were too ‘local’ to wear back home.
19. Every time you travel back home, you’ll be sent a loooong shopping list of foreign goods to bring with you.
20. And, when you’re back in Ghana, you’ll stock up on all the essentials you now know you can’t live without.
21. You’ll feel waaaaaaayyyy more patriotic than you ever did when you actually lived in Ghana.
22. No matter how life is abroad, you’ll take constant solace in the fact that your insane, chaotic, wonderful country is always ready and waiting for you to come home.