This series of posts documents two ordinary folks attempting to get out there and do good. Over the next few months, we’ll follow them through the setbacks and triumphs of their endeavor to take the inspiration of Mountainfilm and turn it into something tangible. (To catch up, start here.)

Having arrived safely in Obuasi, it was time to assess our surroundings and see what we had gotten ourselves into. Fortunately, the shock was not too great. We’re lodged in the former headquarters of the Social Support Foundation – our bedroom was previously an office, replete with office accoutrements (electricity, a ceiling fan, etc.) and one bonus: access to a shower. (Check out photos, here. Not of the shower…pervert.) Having envisioned living in a grass hut with increasingly gamey companionship, our living arrangement came as a pleasant surprise. The director of the organization we’re working with lives next door with his wife, Rita, and two sons, aged two-and-a-half and fifteen months. His house, along with the space we occupy, makes up a small compound surrounded by a wall topped with broken glass. Rita has endeavored to introduce us to the full spectrum of Ghanaian cuisine, and we have set to each meal with cro-magnon abandon (the Ghanaian custom of eating with one’s hands notwithstanding). In other words, our situation is what is referred to, in common parlance, as “plush.”

We share the compound with a few other inhabitants, including twenty-five goats, two dogs, several chickens and roosters, and one tricky mouse we have yet to get the best of. For the most part, the members of our little menagerie are very well-behaved and courteous. However, we have had occasion to chase down an errant goat or two, and the early morning goat-and-rooster discourse directly adjacent our window is only sometimes cause for objection.

Obuasi is a medium-sized municipality located in the jungled hills of Ashanti, halfway between Kumasi (in central Ghana) and the coast. Like most of Ghana, it is not immune to the heat and humidity for which West Africa is famous. It is a sprawling town that meanders through the hills and has several disparate city-centers. Many of the roads are paved, but dirt roads are more common. Sadly, Ghanaians have more pressing issues than littering, which is apparent throughout the town, where roadsides are littered with waste and gutters are clogged with discarded satchets (plastic bags that hold filtered water). Despite the litter, and taken as a whole, Obuasi is a pretty town with myriad charms.

We’ve provided a backdrop for our activities in Ghana – next Thursday, we’ll tell you all about the organization we’re working with. As always, we welcome any questions and observations in the comment section below.