Saturday, May 30, 2009

Trip to Ghana-Local Funeral Celebration. . .



We were invited to attend a local funeral celebration with Elisabeth Faile, one the doctor's wives who has lived at the compound close to 25 years. . . .One of the hospital worker's mother had died in October, and the family was holding a traditional funeral celebration to honor her. . .the body is usually buried immediately, but the celebrations occur several months later when the family has saved up money to pay for the costs of the celebration. .
This man was playing a gourd with a stick attached to the end of it, with strings added to make a guitar. . .resourceful and good!


Traditional funeral celebrations are the most elaborate of all family gatherings, much bigger than weddings. . .the funeral celebration last 3 days, around the clock, with dancing, eating and drumming. . and a few small explosives thrown in as well! There were about 500 people at this celebration, and most of the families had brought food to donate to the celebration. . everything from cows to cases of cokes!

To add to the adventure, the locals men brought 3 cows, a chicken and a goat to the area right in front of where we were sitting and slaughtered them for the dinner that evening. . I was really glad we had hunters and livestock farmers in the family as Georgia and I had seen this before, but the others in our group were a little shocked. . Each family had its own drummers and entered village by family klans with singing and dancing. . it was amazing. . Elisabeth said this particular celebration was one of the largest she had ever seen. It was a huge treat to get to experience it. . . .


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This was the beginning of the family klans coming in to the celebration area. . . Some of the men are wearing traditional dancing smocks which expand as they twirl around. . .


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This was a professional dance group from one of the neighboring villages that had been hired by the family to perform. . .


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This was a family klan arriving from outside the village. . .we saw about 5 of these groups enter the village from all different directions. .if you listen, you will hear explosives going off. . like really loud firecrackers. . .

The celebration was a huge dose of local culture and we enjoyed it immensely. . we gained a new appreciation for the local people just seeing them celebrate. .

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