So, I’ve been planning away for my epic trip to South Africa. One thing I hadn’t thought about was the weather. This is Africa, it is hot right? I looked up the low temperatures for September in South Africa. IN THE 40’S!!! WTF?! That’s 30 degrees colder than what I now consider to be frigid temperatures. I’m currently sitting in about 70ish degree weather. I have my cardigan on and I’m about to go grab my three two-yards to wrap around me.
How am I supposed to deal with cold temperatures? I thought I was going on a beach vacation? How am I supposed to swim when it is that cold outside? BTW, I would say that I am now officially integrated, especially if I think 70 degrees warrants making hot beverages or hovering near my gas flame or standing close to the coal pot when my neighbors are cooking.
Okay, I just went and grabbed my two yard and wrapped it around my legs. So, this morning while washing a small truckload of clothes, I asked my neighbor – so how do I get my hands on a jacket? Market day on Thursday? Are you sure? Okay. So I head into town today to buy biscuits, lunch, and to tell the radio station guy what time I want to do my interview (7:30pm Thursday in case you want to listen to Royals FM 104.7, you know…). So I go tell the guy what time I want for my interview. Then I head over to the biscuit store. IT IS GONE. NO MORE BISCUITS?! WTF. Where did he go? Doesn’t he know that I have needs and his store was the greatest thing ever for a sugar hungry American in need of a hit of sorta chocolate? How could he do this to me? I’m going to need to track him down. So I wander around the market, I head over to my local fabric guy. Just fyi, I have a favorite fabric person in Accra, Techiman, and Wenchi. I’m building a small empire of fabric people. (Specialty = Accra, Regular Batik = Techiman, Basics, Pant Material, and Sometimes Batik = Wenchi.)
Let’s take a step back and go back to yesterday. I picked out my clothes for South Africa. Yeah, that’s right. I picked out my clothes for my trip to South Africa in September just under 3 months away. I like to plan ahead, what can I say. I needed to evaluate what else I needed for my trip, like COLD WEATHER CLOTHES. Jesus Christ. I decided that some basic cardigans would be perfect for my trip. That way I can layer AND look fabulous.
Alright back to today. So I landed at my fabric guy, who was incredibly busy today, I swear every tailor in town was at his place getting something. I like to pretend that whenever I’m at his shop it is busier because they see a white person shopping there. I like to act like I’m helping his sales. Like I said, “pretend.” So I stand around looking for the perfect thing for a cardigan and I found it. Black basic fabric – what a concept! I found a nice cream very soft fabric too. I paired them both with a BRIGHT green and cream sateen for lining. The sateen is pretty warm and not the cold stuff you find sometimes. 28cds for the lot, 10 for the black, 12 for the linings, and 6 for the cream fabric. Once I was done in town of course I ran to my tailor and dropped off my new fabric. I swear that woman will always have something of mine sitting in her shop.
So, before I head to my tailor, I decide to visit my fruit guy. I accidently asked for Kwadwo instead of Kwado. Haha, freudian slip? Translated I said: I want Kwadwo – 1cd. (That’s a guy’s name.) We both laughed, thank god his name isn’t Kwadwo otherwise he might have gotten pissed that I was so cheap. Right next to the fruit guy was a guy selling jackets! JACKETS! I knew it. I knew I would hit jackpot. I instantly walked over to this light red one, it was something I would buy in the States. It was simple, but had just enough detail to keep it interesting. It was short and looked like it would actually fit me. It was stylish and most importantly, it was decently thick. Not like I’m going to Antarctica for a weekend thick, but cool weather thick. It looked perfect. I wanted it but I only had 9cds left and I still needed to buy lunch and toilet paper. The guy comes over and tells me 75, which old currency always confuses me when it isn’t coins. 7cedis and 50pesewas. That’s a pretty good deal for a jacket, but I still need to eat. I look at it, try to look disinterested and tell him I’ll give him 5. DONE. I’m sure I gave him more than necessary, but 5cds for a legitimate jacket is a pretty damn good deal if you ask me. It looks like it was worn maybe twice, it is extremely clean. I see another jacket there, it is a real winner. Sheepskin, cable knit, and suede. All real too. It is super thick, way too big, and all sorts of terribad. I would never wear it but I would love to just have it. It made me laugh really hard. The best part though was that jacket in America would probably cost at least 50bucks, probably closer to 100 since it was all real. They wanted 5cds for it. This is Ghana, you can only get away with wearing jackets for a smallsmall part of the year and not even really then. Who needs a thick jacket like that in this country? If I had 5cds on me, I would have bought it in an instant. It was so ridiculous. Just like the Jar Jar Binks backpack, I am sure I will regret not buying it. $2.50 for a suede, sheepskin, and cable knit jacket. Incredible.
Anyway, so I go to my tailor, give her my stuff and try my jacket on. Now it is time to find out if I just wasted 5cds. IT FITS! Yay! And it fits well, it even matched the skirt I was wearing. It is warm and cozy. Perfect. I think it will keep me warm in the 40s and 60s. It won’t be stylish when I show up to The Test Kitchen or Azure (the two super amazing highly recommended restaurants I already made reservations for in Cape Town), but it will keep me from shivering. Once I get my fabulous cardigans, I will be all set for frigid South Africa. Now all I have to do is pick out one more fantastic dress to wear to dinner in Cape Town. Azure actually has a semi-formal dress code. Oh boy, I definitely won’t be in Ghana anymore. Oh and the Test Kitchen is the top rated restaurant in all of South Africa, I’m getting the 8 course tasting menu. With wine pairings thank you very much. All I have to say is I CAN’T FUCKING WAIT.