Today, we had the incredible opportunity to visit the Palace Museum in Kumasi. The chief of the Ashanti kingdom still lives in part of the palace, but the other part (the older part) has been made into a museum. First, we watched a documentary all about the chiefs, the queen mothers, and the traditions of the culture surrounding the Asantehene. Then, we got to see all of the talking drums that called the people to assemble before the chief back before the people had radios and telephones. We also saw the beds and chairs that carried the kings and queen mothers, including the current ones. Inside a huge, mansion-like building, we got to see all the offices and receiving rooms of the chiefs. They were filled with old photographs and wax figures that looked like all of the old chiefs that inhabited that palace. We also got to see lots of Kente cloths that they used to wear, each one particular to a royal family. We also saw war gear that the Ashanti people do not really use anymore...but in the past, they have been known for their fierceness in battle. In fact, the symbol for the Ashanti people is a porcupine because they are very calm animals until provoked, but they can definitely protect themselves with their pointy quills. Pretty cool. Anyway, I really enjoyed learning all about the history of the Ashanti kingdom.
Just to update officially...my research is officially done! On Monday, I was able to meet and assess the final students. I'm pretty excited to be able to assess the students in America now. I'll make sure I let everybody know the results as soon as I get them.
I have two weeks left before I go home. Isn't that CRAZY? I've been gone for 2 1/2 months. Margaret is leaving on Sunday to go back home, so this week we are going to give the family members their gifts. I was in charge of Christiana's gifts. She calls me Auntie Amy now...it's so cute. I got her some shoes and earrings because she's a pretty posh lady. She sure does love her style. Every time we bring fabric or dresses home, she always has to see them. I think she'll like them.
For the next two weeks, I'll just be tying up loose ends. Basically, I will be visiting some of the friends I've made and volunteering at the clinic. I will also be going to the school in Jumasi, which has a Special Ed program...I thought that would be really interesting. We are also planning to go volunteer at one of the hospitals nearby. So yes, lots to look forward to still. Yesterday, while I was volunteering at the clinic, I found out that I got my birthday card from Scotchie! Apparently, it's never too late to say Happy Birthday...my puppy is so thoughtful!
I'm not sure what we'll do during the evenings, though. For the last 2 1/2 months, we've been watching episodes of the TV show House. However, now all of the seasons are done, so we may need to find new ways to entertain ourselves. I'm not trying to predict the future, here, but I'm guessing it will involve dancing and singing with Grace and Christiana. Christiana is probably my biggest fan...she loves to watch me dance haha. We have such a great time together.
Wish me luck over the next two weeks that I don't get sick!
I love you all muchisimo!