Hi all! We've arrived in Ghana and
so far, so good. Here's the story of the trip over and down.
First, Linus was traumatized by yet another trip. First he tried
to prevent the opening of the luggage, then he decided he'd just tag
along for the ride:
We were driven down to JFK and that was pleasantly uneventful.
The American terminal at JFK is long-overdue for a renovation and
there's not much worth saying about the terminal. We'll leave it
at this - for dinner we had a hot corned beef sandwich from the food
court, followed by a coupla champagnes from the Admiral's club.
Our route took us from JFK to Heathrow, then on to Accra (pronounced
a-CRA). I had an inside seat for the 777 flight over, but there
wasn't much to see anyway. Route took us up over New Haven,
Hartford, Boston, then up along the usual route past Greenland.
While we were approaching Newfoundland one of the passengers had an
allergic reaction to something and we thought we might have to divert
to St. John's but she got better so we plugged on. BTW we got
free upgrade to first class so we had pretty sweet seats that fully lay
down into a bed. That was nice.
The route - sorry it's blurry. Inevitably when I tried to take a
picture of the map we'd hit some turbulence over gray-overcast England.
We transferred from terminal 3 to 4 via a bus, but this was
expected. No customs for a transfer, but we did have to go
through security again. Our business class tickets gave us access
to a special line for us elitist people...
We had a British Airways 767 flight to Accra, and this was a unique
configuration, with seas next to each other opposing each other.
The end result is I flew this flight backward, which added a few new
sensations to the portfolio. This seat reclined all the way too,
but I stayed up so I could get synced on the new time zone. BA
was good about bringing around food and drinks, but not so good about
picking up the empties and there weren't so many places to put the
stuff so I ended up accumulating a bit for the final pickup.
This flight was leaving LHR for Hong Kong, then on to Sydney.
We had about a 90 minute delay due to weather and having to remove a
no-show's bag. While we waited I caught this rainbow over
Accra is almost directly south of London, but our route took us a bit
southeast over France, then over Andorra in the Pyrenees, down over
Barcelona, then on to Palma in the Balearics Islands, then west of
Algiers and then basically south.
Here's the French coast over Le Havre, which I hear we bombed the heck
out of in WWII.
Our projected flight plan.
This is somewhere east of Bordeaux, not a great show but you get the
The Pyrenees, northeast part of Spain.
The south coast of Spain and the Mediterranean. Barcelona is just
off to the right.
They definitely routed us over Palma before heading south, sorry again
for the blurry picture.
I had done a Google Earth flyover of the Africa portion of the trip,
and the northern part is pretty bleak. Sunset came so I wasn't
able to get any pictures of the part south of the Sahara where it's
supposed to be more lush, and our flight back is at night so I probably
won't get any at all this trip. So check out Google Earth if
you'd like to see more of what the center of Africa looks like.
Here's the Sahara at the time I took the locating picture above.
Just sand sand sand...
You may need to view this at an angle to see the sand dune patterns.
Then it was south over Mali, then Burkina Faso, then on to Ghana.
After a very long wait in Immigration, we got our luggage and got out
on the street. One of the people we came to see had actually been
on our flight so we said hi, and our local contact person called us
while we waited in Immigration, so we got out to the car, paid off a
few locals who thought they should get paid for asking to carry our
bags, and then drove off to the Hotel. It's right on the ocean
and I'll get some pix of that tomorrow.
The room is nice, air conditioned, and has that slight damp mildew
aroma that once smelled, brought be back to last year's India
Nicely furnished, the hotel was built in 1999.
And it even has a phone in the bathroom - and what's that next to it?
The ubiquitous shaving guy I saw all over Australia and New
I'll move this to a money page later, but here's what $60 US gets you -
more than half a million cedis, the local currency. They handed
me a pack of 100 5000-cedi notes and a few 10000-cedi notes as
well. We'll see how far this goes.
And does anyone care to guess what "Woof" and "Ball" are intended to do
on the TV remote?
See you tomorrow- your intrepid travelers.