Embarking on a journey from Techiman, Ghana, to Nigeria for the 8th-anniversary celebration of the Global Pals Network was an adventure filled with excitement, exhaustion, and unexpected surprises.
As a member of this global non-profit organization, the prospect of meeting fellow members from around the world, celebrating milestones, and exploring new territories was enticing.
Little did I know that this trip would not only strengthen my connections within the organization but also provide a unique opportunity to experience the diversity of West African countries.
Join me as I recount the highs and lows of this unforgettable journey.
The Long Haul from Techiman to Accra:
The day kicked off with an arduous 8-hour journey from Techiman to Accra, where I would meet up with other Global Pals Network members for the onward trip to Nigeria.
Despite the fatigue that set in upon reaching Accra, the anticipation of the upcoming event fueled my determination to endure another 12 hours of travel.
Accompanying me on this expedition were El Chairmano, Dr. Solomon, Mr. Simon Odame, and Pascalina Odum, the sister of the organization’s founder, Mrs. Mercy Nyarkoah Odoom.
Together, we formed a diverse group representing different corners of the globe, all converging for a common cause.
Our journey took us through Togo and Benin before reaching our final destination in Nigeria.
Unexpected Beauty of Benin:
While Togo’s neat roads left a positive impression, it was Benin that truly surprised me with its beauty.
The well-maintained roads and meticulously planned cities showcased a side of the country I hadn’t anticipated.
Crossing borders in Togo and Benin was a seamless process, setting the stage for what awaited us in Nigeria.
Challenges at the Nigerian Border:
The joy of our journey was momentarily dampened upon crossing the Nigerian border. The officers we encountered displayed extreme corruption, demanding bribes at every checkpoint.
The incessant delays and extortion tactics left a bitter taste, challenging the initial excitement I felt upon entering the country.
The Welcome at “Blue Merit Hotel”:
Upon overcoming the hurdles at the border, we reached our destination – “Blue Merit Hotel.” Owned by Dr. Femi, the leader of the Nigerian chapter of Global Pals Network, the hotel provided a much-needed respite after more than 24 hours of travel.
Exhausted and hungry, we opted to dine at the hotel restaurant, eager to sample Nigerian jollof rice. To my surprise, and perhaps a bit of bias, I concluded that Ghanaian jollof was superior.
The Eventful Anniversary Celebration:
After a restful night, we woke up to a hearty breakfast, gearing up for the main event – the 8th-anniversary celebration of Global Pals Network.
The event was a perfect blend of fun and education, allowing us to connect with fellow members from Nigeria and beyond.
Dr. Solomon’s unexpected dance moves added an extra layer of enjoyment, making the celebration truly memorable.
With the event concluded, we took the opportunity to explore the vibrant city of Lagos-Ikeja. Mr. Simon Odame led us to a local restaurant where we indulged in flavorful pepper soup with goat and fish, savoring the local cuisine.
Despite the disappointment of finding the market closed on Sundays, the overall experience of exploring the city was enriching.
As the journey back to Ghana unfolded smoothly, I reflected on the incredible adventure that the Global Pals Network had facilitated.
This non-profit organization had not only united individuals from various corners of the world but also provided a platform for cultural exchange and exploration.
My gratitude extends to Mrs. Mercy Nyarkoah Odoom, the founder, and the entire Global Pals Network for making this journey possible.
This trip, spanning three countries in two days, served as a testament to the organization’s mission of fostering global connections and friendships.
In the end, Global Pals Network proved to be more than just an association; it was a family, a network of like-minded individuals bound by a shared vision and a passion for making a positive impact on the world.