One of the reasons why I chose Ghana as my first stop in Africa back in Nov 2018 is because of the slave dungeons. Hearing about them and watching them on a video does not do them justice. Cape Coast and Elmina Slave dungeons have different stories but had the same end goal. It wasn’t until I entered those spaces and experienced a very small aspect of what really occurred, did it all make sense. This is when I knew others needed to see this first hand.
For me, going to the dungeons answered so many questions and helped me to put a lot of things into perspective. I can hear the level of miseducation flowing from many people’s mouths who have never visited but claim to be “experts” or even be dismissive about the importance of seeing them in person. Some people in their lack of knowledge, discourage people from coming to Africa and seeing for themselves. It’s really sad to hear.
When my wife visited Slave River and Cape Coast dungeon, I didn’t know what to expect. When we arrived at Slave River, I could tell her mood became somber. She even took off her shoes and socks (in Africa) and walked 1/8 of a mile on the bare ground to the river banks. This was the same person who a year ago said NO to Africa. This was the same person who mocked my three trips to East & West Africa over the past year. This was the same person who believed Africa was just a place filled with nothing but poor, starving and disease riddled people. For her to come to Ghana was a major mental hurdle and a reflection of her willingness to grow in her thinking. As a result, I was somewhat surprised and somewhat not surprised by her reaction to what all she was seeing. She’s the real deal and I didn’t expect any of this to fly over her head.
When we arrived at Cape Coast and she entered the male slave dungeon first, she could no longer hold back what she had been feeling since the river. Her emotions came to the surface and she had to step away for a few moments to gather herself. Upon her return, I could tell something had impacted her in a major way. I could see that her eyes were opening on a different level. When three months ago, she was fearful of our oldest son joining me in Africa, she firmly stated today that we needed to drop off the two youngest sons for two years and let them mature 😆.
She has fallen in love with the Ghanaian people and even said she wanted to just spend some time being with them in their daily world. I was really stunned by the rapid change of perspective considering her level of resistance a year ago AND her level of “Bougieness” 😳. Yep, Trish has some bougie in her and for most bougie people, West Africa is beneath their travel grade (so they think). Most don’t even consider it. My advice to her (to assist with her bougieness) was to “Leave America In America” and that she would need to make some adjustments to being in a different culture. She’s handled her adjustments like a pro. To see her response to Ghana 🇬🇭 confirmed so much for me. It’s like she grew to another level of understanding by seeing how powerful the people of West Africa really are. She saw there was nothing to fear and there was nothing that should be demonized about this part of the world.
Now that my wife has seen with her own eyes, I can only imagine how this will impact her down the line. The one thing I know is that she has been truly touched on her journey to Ghana 🇬🇭.