In 2013 I went to Ghana to study percussion, singing, and dancing with the Hartt Percussion Studio.
While I have many stories from this trip, I will share just one for the A to Z challenge.
One of our stops was to visit a crocodile and bird sanctuary which also doubled as a restaurant. I was not feeling well in two ways. First, because I almost got left behind in the rainforest and second, because the reason I almost got left behind was I was getting sick in the bathroom… It happened to almost every one of us, but only for a day or so. Coincidentally, none of the people from Las Vegas got sick….
Anyway, we went to this restaurant and were asked if we wanted to touch the crocodiles.
Of course I wanted to touch a crocodile. (Well, assuming I wouldn’t get eaten in the process.)
So those who were brave formed a line and one by one reached down to pat the crocodile’s back. The crocodile just sat there, still as a statue. Until my turn, of course. As I was bending down the crocodile stood up and began to move. I rapidly pulled back my outstretched hand and the worker (his name was Cena) laughed at me, “He’s just peeing.”
The crocodile settled back down and Cena told me to try again. As I reached down to touch the crocodile Cena placed his hand on my back (for moral support I guess). Success! I can check off crocodile petting on my bucket list.
We all sat down for dinner, but I was getting more and more nauseous so I excused myself to get some fresh air (and also relocate to right outside the bathroom). Cena came over and sat beside me. He looked at me and then said, “I knew, right when I touched you… I felt sparks.” He held up his hand and gestured so I could appreciate the magic of the moment. And then our conversation went roughly like this:
“That’s very nice, thank you…but I have a boyfriend.”
“Where is he?”
“Back home, in the United States.”
“Well I’m right here. We could get married.”
“Umm, I can’t stay here…you don’t have cheese.” (Cheese is my favorite!)
“You want cheese!? I can get you cheese! I can get you whatever you want!”
“Thanks, but that’s okay.”
If you didn’t realize by that conversation, I’m not really a smooth talker, and I don’t know how to get out of awkward moments. I had to excuse myself to “check on my friends”, but really I just wanted to let my professor know. When I informed him he replied with, “Oh cool, do you think he could get us some free sodas?” (Which he did end up doing.)
In the restaurant they had some old music equipment like a guitar, keyboard, drum set and microphone. One of our teachers asked if we could “jam” and Cena agreed. The rest of the evening was spent with percussionists taking turns jamming (including singing Hot Hot Hot) and Cena supplying us with free beverages. It was a bizarre, but definitely memorable night.
I’m participating in the A to Z Challenge. Each day except Sunday I will make a new post with the next letter of the alphabet. I am trying to match each letter with an anecdote about a place I’ve visited. I hope you enjoy!