February 28th, Elmina, Ghana

Yesterday, we visited the Saint George's Castle in Elmina. It was a departure point for slaves for hundreds of years beginning with the Portuguese in 1480. After three battles with the Dutch it was operated for another couple of hundred years by the Dutch and eventually sold to the English when slavery was no longer so lucrative. It is a world UNESCO heritage site. We had a fabulous tour with a guide, that left me sad and horrified. Definitely black Africans were very complacent in the slave trade so nobody is blameless. The governors of the castle had their church (Roman Catholic for the Portuguese and Protestant for the Dutch. They left there wives in Europe, came to Africa where they operated the absolutely inhuman business of raping slave women, and men and then selling them. One of the governors is buried in the castle and his tomb stone reads that he was hard working and god fearing and a great man. I certainly can't make any sense of this part of history.

Then this morning, we set off for Cape Three Points. We caught a tro tro on the highway going to Takoradi. I am still not recovered from Friday's horrendous driver so as we swerved around trucks on blind crests, I determined that I really hate travelling. Eventually we were dropped off, no where near a tro tro station but there were several taxis in view. A chap asked where we were going, and we thought he was a taxi driver and we set off walking, him with our two bags. Jim asked if he would stop on the way to the west going tro tro station at an ATM. Well we walked for about eight blocks, and by this time a woman and another man had joined us. Eventually we were across the street from a bank with an ATM. Jim went across to make a withdrawal. A beautiful woman dressed in orange whispered in my ear. "You are with a thief." I got both bags from the man who was attempting to cross the street after Jim and then a large Ghanian discussion broke loose. Everyone was arguing and shouting. I dragged the two big bags to a chair and refused to let anyone touch them. Of course everyone tried to be helpful but I couldn't be sure who was on the up and up. The beautiful woman in orange did give me a thumbs up and told me that a couple of other fellows were good men. Eventually another woman put her arm around me and said that stuff like this should never happen in Ghana. She would take us to the police and we would be safe. At the police station we filed a report and they were great. Eventually, Patrick, the policeman in charge, had a friend who drives taxi and got his friend to come and pick us up. This chap drove us for hours on horrendous ( and I mean unbelievably bad) roads to get to our destination! And now we are at Cape Three Point. The only weird thing about arriving here is that we are with all obrunis (white people).