In the morning we had a long reflection about the project, our experiences, thoughts, and what we learned. Needless to say, it was quite an emotional discussion.
After breakfast we went back to face the market. This time we all had our lists ready of what we wanted, and knew how to somewhat bat off the shopkeepers. I had Emmanuel come with me to make sure I did not get ripped off. I tried my best at haggling — starting at 1/3 of the price and then only rising to pay at the most, half. I got everything I needed in the nick of time. We had our last supper at Flames again, but this time we were able to eat outside. I had my final order of Red Red (can’t get enough!). Derrick surprised us with our last order of ice cream, but this time it was chocolate covered ice cream bars! I always felt like Derrick was picking up the check, but in reality he just had all of our money and spoke to the waiters in Twi.
Back at the hotel we packed up all our things. Derrick, Chief, Emmanuel, and Ma Tess presented each of us with a dress and a bracelet. Once again, we were surprised. They have done more than enough for us and gifts were not necessary. We, in turn gave our gifts to them and Leila gave them their tips. I could not fathom tipping someone who has been a part of our family for the past two weeks. How much is too much or too less? I’m glad I did not have to take care of that part. After our gift exchange we bid farewell to the beautiful Ma Tess and drove to the airport. We first checked our bags and then came back outside to say goodbye to Emmanuel, Chief, and Derrick. It was a tearful goodbye. As Emmanuel said, all good things must come to an end.
Our flight left Accra at 10:45pm, arrived in London at 6:25am, and arrived at JFK at 11:30 am. I was incredibly confused about the time difference and what day it was. I finally got the hang of it once back on Long Island.
This was the most amazing experience I have ever had. I feel honored to be part of such a project and I hope to come back soon…Just need to fundraise!