Pray for the money

Shortly after I got back to Ghana, I called my ex’s mother, just to say I was back, he already has a list of things he hates about me and didn’t want him to add the fact that I came back and didn’t call his poor sweet mother (she is far from helpless but that’s another story). Just like her son, her biggest concern was whether I got a job yet. I said I had, you would think the woman would say “oh thank God” or “well done”. Instead she said “Big money is coming”. She then went on to tell me about her church service that Sunday. There was a big kind of summit where all the Apostolic churches gathered to pray. Why? They prayed for the government to do something about the cash flow situation.

Now, the situation in Ghana is bad, the cedi is declining, businesses are struggling because they have to increase price, but the poor black man doesn’t have enough in his pocket to pay. However, when I go to church on Sunday I go to praise God and thank him for what he has done, a Hail Mary and an Our Father, then I’m out. I think God knows about the situation we have here, so one would presume it was rather unnecessary for a big old gathering to pray for money.

Alas, this is the state of the nation, the government is to blame for the mess and God is looked up to, to fix it. Now I am not saying all the Charismatic, Apostolic and Pentecostal churches are bad. I have been invited to a couple of services where I have listened to the word of God and it has really touched me. I especially enjoy the praise and worship at the beginning. However, there are dozens of churches all over Ghana and probably West Africa who rather than preach the word of God, pray for materialistic things like money, cars, a 6ft tall husband with a 5 bedroom car who drives a land cruiser. Yes, we do it in our heads, we say it out loud before bed, but I don’t know, it feels a bit greedy gathering all the churches in the neighbourhood for special prays, specifically for money.

They could just as easily use that same energy to gather at Parliament House and get the answers from the President and his band of merry ministers, it would probably be faster to. Let’s face it, I’m praying for a decent man and a satisfying job, Mrs X is praying that her husband the serial cheater will change, Mr X on the other hand is praying his wife would stop nagging. Miss Y is praying she passes her exams. Everybody is praying for something whether it is health, money or otherwise, but on a Sunday, we are supposed to gather and just say thank you. Just listen to the word, sing a couple of songs and go home. Even the good book said he rested on Sunday, so let him rest.

It is little wonder the Cedi is declining when instead of focusing the energy on finding ways to rebuild the currency, people are gathering for mass prayers then sitting and waiting for a miracle to come…smh

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Techno Savvy Ghana

My ex boyfriend came to mind on valentines day, 6 years of bullying and trying to get him to understand that the world doesn’t revolve around him, he kinda killed my spirit and gave me self esteem issues for a very long time afterwards, it was like I had PTSD or something. His personality was not to disimilar from Nana (which is how I know I was not in the right frame of mind when I agreed to go out with him). When I thought about Freddy though, I actually smiled, after all, it can’t have been that bad for me to have stayed with him for all those years. He used to buy me really big valentines cards with a teddy and or a rose, and he would buy a bottle of wine for me and 6 cans of Stella Artois for a fiver for him. We’d have a Chinese Takeaway, and we’d just have a laugh.

Nothing like a bad break-up to make the last bad break-up feel like it was heaven. I hope that I think of Nana in that way one day soon (hopefully when I am in a great relationship though and not after a break-up). But today, I just want revenge, and I want him to suffer, and feel every bit of pain he made me feel. I suppose it’s all part of the healing process.

But anyway, today’s topic involves, my office, the electricity, the technology and how I had nothing to do for a day and a half (well two days as I will probably spend the rest of the day enjoying the net, re-reading my girl P’s email and planning my programmes to download). I may get a few calls in, but it all depends on if the Admin manager gives me my fuel allowance. He is the epitome of a manger whereby power goes to one’s head, yet they manage to do nothing.

Now, it may sound like one of my bitching fests, my Goddess complex where I am better than the people around me, but in this case it is true…lol

I like to come in early on Monday mornings, it sets me up for the day, well it’s probably because I don’t do much on Sunday’s so I am not pressing the snooze button about a million times. I get here now, and there was no electricity. This one, wasn’t ECG though, originally they thought it was the young man who was supposed to pay the bill. Karl, his name is, he’s so sweet, in addition to doing his own job they just make him do everything else, buy water, do the photocopies (the Admin manager said it doesn’t make financial sense for the business to have one we were hiring). Anyway, after discussing with the operations manager whether they were going to rat him out to MD, turns out it was a connection fault with the generator switch.

Now I was expecting that the previous week when the lights went off, and we had to sit here the whole day until 5pm doing nothing that Admin would have sorted it out. Apparently, he called once, didn’t get a response, that was it, until Monday. So we sat outside in the hot sun while we had our meeting, that was fun. We did our usual role play and I realised I have created a monster. A little mini me, but a bit like a designer knock off. It’s looks the same, but it is so obvious it is not. Why do I say that, usually I give people a tough time as the client being called. In the real world you will have to deal with a lot of objections, so I do my best to make it as real as possible. Well I had to call my girl and she gave me a really tough time, except she kept saying inappropriate things that you wouldn’t really hear in a business conversation, and I kind of ran rings around her. But I like her, so she is now my pet project, going to toughen her up (I think this is her first real job) but I will fight her corner too. She’s young and hasn’t got that whole female jealousy thing going on so I will take the time to mold her.

Well anyway, it got to later on in the day, we looked like a bunch of misfit homeless people, some where sleeping on the couch, some where reading newspaper at reception and some where just asleep on their desk. So I go into see Admin, and said so what do we do. He says ‘we sit here until 5.30′. I’m thinking dick head, give me an update and give me some alternate means to do my work. You see, the phones are all cordless and run over the network, we all have desktops, all the numbers are on the database, on the computer, so if the electricity or the internet goes down, that’s the company buggard basically.

So anyway, I ask him for an update, and that’s when it must have clicked to find out where the people are. They said they will be here soon, he didn’t get a time, so we sat here, until it was time to go home.

This morning, Admin goes on and on about how he waited until 8 (well he has free reign of the company car so I don’t know what his problem is quite frankly) and well no point getting annoyed with me, when you didn’t bother to apply pressure. So that was the morning wasted, no phone to call, no internet so couldn’t even use the internet on my phone, and once again rather than looking like a professional outfit, we looked like a bunch of misfits.

Admin and operations manager went out to a meeting, neither looked like they had a clue but hey ho.I went home and slept for a bit (well I did have a bit of cramp and it would have been wrong to sleep on my desk). Funny enough it was the two junior boys that followed up with the generator guys and it got fixed by the time I came back after lunch.

This place that I work is very amusing, it has all the mod cons, latest technology, I am sure that what they have mirrors the office in London. Only problem is, this is Ghana, light issues, internet is not always stable, people are not that up to speed. It is all very well having the technology, but there has to be a plan B for those ‘rainy days’, I suggested that there should be a few mobile phones around, just in case we have this issue again, (because I am not using my credit for company business, sorry, and 7 people can’t be queuing for the 1).

He probably won’t hear me though, until the next time. I should stop giving people my brain….

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I have to get into work at 7 and be out at 5, the rationale being that business hours are between 8 and 5 so those are the outer hours is what we should do to read emails and prepare. I am a bit lucky that I live 10 minutes away and I have a car, but look at the people who live on the other side of town. It’s lunchtime and I already want to sleep.
I also realised that the people in ‘management’ are basically members of her family. The admin manager for example, he had been out of work for a long time and got this job through his aunt. So he get’s to use the company pool car too and from work and gets his own office, but what does he know about the business. I have been given 50GHS a week for petrol, on condition that I go out to meet clients once a week, I should also take a receipt when I buy this petrol because I may use it for something else. Trust me, the way my car is sucking fuel there is no chance of that. So I say, what about the to and from work, isn’t that for business purposes that I use my car. That is a benefit he says. Hmmmm, alright love, and he will be checking, because he doesn’t have anything else to do. What are his other issues, the time we take for lunch and removing the kettle from the kitchen. Yes, you read right, he says that if it is in the kitchen we may be tempted to use it but there is already a water cooler, so to save costs and to avoid temptation, he is taking the kettle out. I think it is rather the case that he doesn’t have one and he wants it for his house. What he should be doing is getting my bank details, and making sure I sign the contract before I ship out of here at a days notice. But somehow, he has overlooked that and I am not going to be the one to remind him.

We don’t help ourselves really, you have people in positions that they have no business being in, concentrating on things that they shouldn’t do and so the things that should be turn their concentration to, are missed out. So the business just doesn’t go anywhere, and it starts from the top.

Today, the law says that unless your business does transactions in foreign currency, you can’t change money over a certain threshold. Basically, there is too much dollars in the system but no cedis so it is depreciating at a very alarming rate. It would be fine, if and only if they stopped people from charging in dollars. The company I work with charges its fees in dollars, so according to law, I should give her the cedi equivalent. Why is it still alright for her to charge in dollars. Today if I pay my mortgage I still have to give them the cedi equivalent at the prevailing rate. The rate as at today is 2.5, so how exactly is this piece of legislation going to benefit me going forward.

What they need to do is stop people charging in dollars for cars, houses, and the rest. They also need to stop putting a high tariff on the new goods people bring in and keep them on the crap that people do bring in (like a 50 year old death trap of a car). That way, when the car is at the showroom, the dealer would have worked out what he had spent and then add his margin on accordingly. As for houses, I don’t see any reason why they need to be charged in dollars, cost of cement plus whatever fixtures and fittings put in, then add your margin. It doesn’t take rocket science, I don’t see the logic in continuing to charging in a currency whereby the people don’t earn as a salary.

However, they won’t look at that side, because the person who had the bright idea did not look at the bigger picture. Partly because he is not qualified, and partly because he is thinking about the fact that in 2 years he may not be in that position, so he needs to put as much away in his own foreign bank account. The fact that it is at the expense of his own black brothers and sisters, that is neither here nor there.

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My Crazy Lovelife

If you didn’t get it by now from my previous post, I got duped by a guy with a fake accent. This is how I know that I was really not in my right mind. I mean, and I say this without disrespect. But he was a bullshitter, he is the type of guy that could convince you that you were riding a mercedes when you were in fact in a kia piccanto. Then if you get annoyed and ask for your money back, he’d be out the door. If you had ever watched the show Only Fools and Horses, you would know the type of guy I mean.

To be honest, at first, he was just something to while away time. Loneliness is a bitch, especially without my sister there to give them the once over, she makes me look like a pushover, you will have to jump through so many hoops before you can open that door. But I was getting the attention, he was easy on the eye, I was following my rules and things were going great. Then somewhere along the line I must have got it in my head that this guy was a responsible human being and agreed to get serious with him. Here’s where I learned my new rule. Never date a guy who is dumber than you are, because just like the ugly guy, man is going to have ideas above his station and there you go.

Now when I say he is dumb, I don’t mean to be rude, but he is not the brightest tool in the box. We used to hang out in this spot called Famphy and you know the clientelle are not amongst the most intellectual so he could get away with whatever nonsense he would talk about (if I actually remembered anything we did talk about I would just be deceiving you). But I don’t think that you could put him amongst intellectuals and he would feel comfortable. He told me that he had a degree in Building Construction or something like that, he would talk stuff but I didn’t get it, turns out it was actually the equivalent of a b-tech. Now I know it was a while since I was at school but isn’t that’s not even a full A-Level. He told me he was 35, I find out later he’s only 32. He told me he had a kid, I find out later he has another one somewhere, I don’t know if the mother refuses him to see the child or he is that irresponsible, but put it this way, he is not forthcoming with the truth.

So it was going on for a while, then the guy was like he wants to marry me. I’m like, alright mate, if you say so. He was saying it for months, “Mrs Asare” he used to say, and I’d turn around and ask if his mother was around, I’d heard it all before so really it wasn’t such a big deal. So my dad rolls into town and he says he is going to do the knocking, I still didn’t believe him until the day came and he actually did it (remember I thought he was a bullshitter but I didn’t know at that point that he was an out and out dishonest, deceitful, small minded little man).

It seems like the knocking was the peak of the relationship and it started going downhill from there. What I do know, is the most dangerous man, is a blunt instrument who thinks he’s the smartest tool in the box. Now previously, if he couldn’t make an appointment, he would call, but most of the time he would try and be considerate. Now, Nigga didn’t give a damn, and worst of all, 9 times out of 10 he would borrow my car, use it for days and of course bring me an empty tank back. Lots of promises were made, he would fix the A-C in my car, he would sort out my generator, he would pay my cleaner. Today I drive with the windows down, if there is light-off it is me and the mosquitoes and I have asked my cleaner to return when God willing my salary suffices. But he was very fond of telling me about the days that he ‘used’ to have money.

Now, discussion goes to the wedding, now this is supposed to be my day, I’ll not get into the long story but basically, he wanted to do a quicky wedding in a court house then a big bash in the evening. Why, his words were “my friend didn’t give his wife an engagement ring until their 5th year anniversary”. Now please anyone, if you see the correlation between the two, please let me know because I just don’t get it. When I told him I wanted to get married in church, that should have been the first sign, because that was when I saw the evil spirit come out. “You and your mother arrange it and then send me the bill” he said in a really angry voice. But I ignored it.

Now we go to the first counselling session, we’d already had an argument the day before because we had arranged to see my aunt, but all of a sudden something came up, then I find out later, he found time to deal with another thing that came up, which took obviously the whole day and night, and I sent him a text to say he wasn’t ready for marriage. We didn’t talk until the next day when I called him to ask if he was coming, and his response was “but didn’t you send me that message yesterday”. Now nigga, if I am wrong, tell me I am wrong, but then why prove me right by refusing to go to the counseling. Well he decided to turn up in the end, and what was his question to the counselor who is catholic, who runs a counseling session in a catholic church. “What’s wrong with having a court house wedding, then do a blessing later”. So she explained to him that it is not recognized by the church which would mean we are living in sin and all that goes along with it. Now, Nana likes when someone agrees with him so he can say “even so and so agrees”. Something told me that would be the last counseling session that he would attend. I was right. The second one “something came up” by the third one we were barely on speaking terms.

In parallel to this, he had the bright idea that I should go to America, because his dad the doctor (who is actually a nurse) said I would have no problem with a job or accommodation. When I said I wasn’t to comfortable, the devil came back. (He later asked me if I was so insecure to leave him, this is a guy with no job, a hustler, who drives an Opel from 20 years ago, who still lives at home with his mum). Like why would I want to be an illegal immigrant in America, and well Ghanaians brag, they will tell you it’s not a problem and when you get there it’s a different story. At least here, I am a bum living in my own house.

So, anyway, on the third week, I found a lump in a very unusual place, that day I had no money, my line had been cut, I thought nigga may just call me then I could ask him to take me to the hospital to get it checked out. He didn’t, really I just assumed he was busy doing whatever he did to make money, he’s now a project manager for people building houses, doing his own business as he put it. So I went to the petrol station, borrowed gas, then went by his house, I didn’t see his car so I drove on to find the money elsewhere, cos I was in pain. So I didn’t hear from him that day, I didn’t hear from him the next day. So eventually I got some cash to buy credit, he picks up and I say oh don’t you want to know what’s happened to me, he said he didn’t care because if I wanted him to care I would have knocked on his gate, but he heard I went to Famphy to get a drink on his name. Then he put the phone down on me. It took me two days to get angry, it would have been shorter but I was in a bit of pain. Then I called him, he was at a festival having fun. So I’m thinking, this guy really doesn’t care. So I let rip…yes I went straight up ghetto and I guess the frustrations I had put aside as not a big deal also came out. But the next day, I apologised, I thought I may have gone a bit too ghetto so I may have gone too far, nigga wasn’t phased.

So then he tells me he wants to go on a break, not because of the argument but because I want too much of his time, because I didn’t want to go to America, and some other stuff, the actual reason for the break changed every time we discussed it, and that’s when I left. Oh yes, and apparently I should be grateful that even if he doesn’t turn up when he is supposed to, he does, and he takes me to Famphy. Like say you took me to Golden Tulip once and I will be happy, but a place where the drinks are 1.50ghs, and the only cocktail they do is a mix of madingo, alomo, lime (the last shot escapes me everytime). No. Then he says he was GOING to pay my mortgage but because of MY behaviour he decided not to. Thanks mate, you tell everyone that you have got a good heart (he told me like at least once a day), but you would allow the girl who at one point you planned to marry to be out on the streets. Logical. The last time he gave a reason for the break, was when I was in London. I had been through a whole lot of medication and after making me take a biopsy for the lump (which thankfully I got the all clear), I decided not to talk to him for a few days because really he was half the reason I was in that state in the first place. I finally call him back, and he tells me that the reason for the break is because of something I said THREE days before the knocking, but he thought I would change. So I asked what, and then he responds and before I could say anything he said “check your phone”. So I’m like first of all, I don’t hang on to bitterness like it is a baby but I said it, but it was 2 days after I found the lump. He then says I shouldn’t make my illness an excuse. Then he cut me off and I didn’t hear from me again.

So I come back now, all refreshed and looking blinging thanks to the love of my parents and siblings. We have seen each other on a few occasions, but he’s doing his thing and I’m doing mine.

Then last week I meet a young lady. We have a few things in common, both from abroad, both like a drink and the odd fag, she has her own place, we are the same age, both have foreign passports. She doesn’t know me, but she does know Nana. Apparently they were supposed to go to a funeral that day but he didn’t show. Apparently, Nana had set her up with a friend, but he started to like her, it sounded like they were friends with benefits I don’t know but judging by his MO his fickle little mind had wondered elsewhere and I just gave him the ammunition to be able to break free. He had actually called me the night before and said he was going to come and see me, but then I think he remembered their arrangement, got himself confused and went home.

So his plan I hear was to ignore me until I eventually disappeared so he can get away with not having to take back the drinks and explain (or lie) why he wasted everybody’s God damn time. Which is why he got annoyed when I explained everything to his Dad. Sorry, but I am not going to be ignored. Be a man, face up to your responsibility. Like he got insulted when I said something like “you are going to ignore me (which he was doing) and then I am going to have to lie down and….when you think it’s all good again” or something like that. Like why get insulted when that’s what you do… I don’t know.

But anyway, my ego is a bit sore, and I am really quite annoyed that he is still walking on this earth, but I will get over it. I honestly thought at some point he has the potential to bring himself up, but lower your standards and that’s what you get. I also thought ok, he is slightly unfocused, but he’s nice and we can work on the rest, but all he is, is a deceitful, dishonest, egocentric, egomaniac.

But I can’t blame him totally, what is it they say, the devil makes work for idle hands. Had I been working and not in an unemployed funk, I probably would have seen him for the bullshitter he was and stayed away from him. Smother says it’s all experience. I think I have had enough of experiences now…all I want is a guy without an agenda, who holds an intelligent conversation and can see past his nose. Is it too much to ask.

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Human Resources, Recruitment and stuff

It’s Tuesday morning, I was going to send this out yesterday, but halfway through typing the lights went out and the generator messed up. So I was here from 2pm, doing nothing basically, the phones are set to wireless so couldn’t make a call, the CV’s were on the computer so couldn’t read them. My boss wouldn’t allow us to go, but at ten to 5 I managed to break loose because really it was a waste of a day. It is a bit of a shame because Monday morning started off great, I got in at 6.40 having typed up my script for the morning’s role play. Then I go to switch on the photocopy and nearly blew up the building. A fuse burst (well it felt like it), then a whole phase of the building went down, photocopier, internet and water cooler. There was a bit of a panic because everyone needed to print out their script, and I’m like what did we do before computer, pen and paper, write it out. That didn’t go down well with the Admin Manager, he gave everyone a lecture about it not being printed. I still think that he is trying to justify his position because only God knows what he does in the little office around the corner, because his only other added contribution to the morning’s meeting was that people were taking a little bit extra than the allocated one hour for lunch.

I further antagonised the operations manager this morning too. Honestly, I swear, I didn’t do it intentionally. We had to give feedback on everyone’s presentation and it is not my fault that the boss agreed with every comment I made. Then when it was his turn, she made a comment that he sounded like he was reading. The final blow was when after my presentation, the only comment was that I said that I was a “consultant” and not a “senior consultant” (that whole status thing), and I didn’t make business conversation, but I decided to leave it out anyway. So the Ops Manager decides to give his comment and all he could come up with is that I was slanging. Like I’m British, have you not heard one before. I’m already annoyed that my accent is going (just as smother said), and I am really making a conscious effort not to let it go, so please.

Well he shouldn’t worry though, he can get me at tomorrow’s meeting as I have not called any companies, well technically it is not entirely my fault because the lines and the net was down so was unable to get any information. Now I have to find clients with exceptional talents. Which leads me to my point today. In Ghana, it is very common to have a 6 or 7 paged CV unlike the 2 page CV required for UK applicants. In UK, I know that most agencies put your CV through a scanner and if the buzz words come up it is accepted, if not, CV thrown in the bin. Here all CV’s are read by one scanner that is me. So here’s a few pointers for anyone who sends their CV through, just in case you don’t hear from me or any of my colleagues:

1.First of all this is an executive recruitment consultancy (mid to senior level), unfortunately we don’t look for work for fresh graduates. If you come through here as a fresh graduate with little to no experience, you can have all the firsts in the world, you are going to have to take a very junior level position.

2. Please don’t say you pay attention to detail then have spelling mistakes, grammatical errors and words where you have put a s pace in between them because you haven’t read the CV before sending.

3. Entry Level means you want a position that doesn’t require much skill or qualification, it’s actually lower than a graduate position, if you have been a Finance Manager for the past 20 years, you are not looking for an entry level position. I don’t know if it is that people don’t understand the meaning or they haven’t changed their profile statement in 20 years but you should know better.

4. If the font is in Comic or any other garish font which quite frankly hurts my eyes, I will throw it away, I am not going to look at it. That means you Mr acting CEO, computers have been around for a while now so you should know how to change your style to a decent font. Please also make sure that the font is consistent throughout the CV, it makes ones eyes really sore otherwise.

5. Telling me that you worked in a position for two years but not giving me dates, doesn’t tell me anything and your CV will end up in the file marked “others”.

6. Make sure your work experience reads in the right order.

7. It is really nice to know that you are a married father of two who is a non-smoker, but I just want to know if you can do the job, it is rather unnecessary.

8. Three references are enough, one CV I read had about 9 references, I get your point, you are a credible person, but I don’t need to get one from your pastor, your best friend from college, your prophet, your high school teacher and your doctor in addition to the countless other references you put down.

9. The generic random cover letter is not necessary, this is a recruitment firm, we like your CV, we send it forward, the covering letter is a waste of time, save it for the direct company to company application, that way you can tailor it to be more personal.

10. I know that it is the Ghanaian way to have a 6 page long CV but try and keep it as brief as possible. When it is too long you find that companies only read the last job you did and may miss out on the rest of your work experience. Long story short, it gets boring.

We’ve just finished our morning devotion, which as I said is a good thing, but I like to have my quiet time with God, not with wailing noises around me, I am hoping that they never ask me to lead because my prayers are very short. Thank you God for today, please make it a fruitful one.

Time to make like I am working now, I haven’t managed to call one company yet, so I better do what I was employed to do. Well at least until lunchtime.

Goodbye for now.

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End of the first week

After being unemployed I am quite excited to be back working, however I am a bit concerned that it is more for the fact that I have more content for my blog than I am making money again. Well lets face it, with the cedi down and almost out, this is basically an allowance, and Headhunting, recruitment, it is basically telesales. I did telesales somewhere after school, calling people to ask if they want a free vacuum cleaning demonstration, £3per hour and 50p for every demonstration booked. Saturdays and Sundays, I think it was 6 hours a week as I was between 14 & 16. I started out with a friend of mine, she lasted the first weekend, I lasted until the end of the second. I say it once and I say it again, I am really not cut out to call people and ask them to find jobs for my candidates. But I will continue to do so for as long as I last here.

So today, this about the people. They are a very nice bunch of people, there is something about working in a small organization that makes it more homely and there is less backstabbing going on. Apart from the managing director there are 4 ladies, including reception, and a lady that does recruitment for low skilled staff, the rest are guys although I think I have more balls than they do.

I start with the operations manager. I am guessing he is a pastor or a church elder, because every meeting sounds more like a sermon then a run through of the KPI’s. He is very confident when he speaks but ask him a question and you have thrown him off balance. Between 7-7.30 every morning we are supposed to do praise and devotion. I had been coming in at 8 every day because we are training but yesterday I got in and I thought that I had entered Action Chapel rather than my office. Now don’t get me wrong, I am all for giving my life to Christ and putting my day in God’s hands, but i am used to a little prayer in the morning alone, not shouting and clapping and walking in circles. Leave that one for Sunday guys, I’m a catholic girl, sit down, stand up, prayer after communion and go home, not used to this and not in the workplace. Can’t see this on a Monday morning at the CPS office but hey I chose to be here.

I don’t think we will clash, but that’s because I can tell he is quite a timid character and doesn’t really like conflict, but sometimes I can see when I make a suggestion he is looking at me like do I not notice he is my senior colleague. But sorry, this is an internationally led company, no yes sir here my friend. My boss is called MD, I am the only person that calls her by her name, it just feels strange calling her that, so I don’t, and I don’t say please at the beginning of every sentence, just where they are normally used in an English sentence. I think that they got that it is because I am not from these parts, because sorry, “no please” does not make grammatical sense so I am not going to say it. I may say “no thank you” if the sentence requires politeness but that’s as far as it goes.

That’s another thing, Ghanaians love a title. When I first walked in the office, I was just another consultant, when the rest of the consultants realized I was here as a Senior Consultant, they became a bit shy. There is one guy here, so sweet, if he doesn’t grow a spine I may inadvertently start bullying him, it’s like whatever I ask, he’s like ok, rather sweet though.

The admin manager, he looks older than I think he actually is, his height and his weight deceive him I think. At first I thought he would be quite a strong character but he is quite a nervous soul and ask him something out of the box he just dithers. Today I asked if I could claim money to buy petrol so I could go and see a client. If I am going to have to do this telemarketing, at least once in a while let me go out and see someone face to face. I normally do better face to face, especially when talking to guys…haha, I didn’t want to take the company car, I have my own, and maybe someone else may need it in my absence so therefore just claim me petrol. He dithered, then he said he would check with “MD”, then he said I could use the company car, and I asked to use my own. Then he paused, and then I said, ok you check and get back to me. Then it was like I must have released him from chains as the way he said ok, it was like, you know when someone tells you to hold your breath then finally they tell you that you can breathe again and that relief when you finally get to breathe…that was him.

Another character is a new recruit. We have been doing the training together, and no offense, but for the life of me, I don’t understand how he got the job. It’s like he just doesn’t get it. For days we have been going through slides, it is pretty basic common sense coupled in with some scripts and forms, very self explanatory. You ask him if he understands, he says yes, but ask him to repeat or if a question is asked in relation to what was said, he either admits or goes off on a very strange tangent. Then I am sitting there thinking what the hell were you listening to.

I think he has been used to selling simple products, if you buy a lot, you get a discount, that kind of thing, because I don’t see him as someone who could effectively convince a company to hire his candidate where there is no vacancy listed, but we shall see. He may be a genius in the real world, but in the hypothetical world, he sucks. We were reading from our fake scripts and yes it is difficult to make it sound conversational, but this was just straight, I am reading from the script and not even going hear what the other person is saying.

The MD herself, she’s a nice person, but doesn’t really lead by example. This week we were told to come in at 8 for training at 9. Monday we started at 11, Tuesday 11, Wednesday not at all, Thursday 2 and looks like another late one again tonight as she still hasn’t called for the training. But it’s her company so what can I say. She says she is leaving for UK later on in the year, her successor, will be her brother, I say no more as I don’t want to be accused of being a hater.

Well that’s the end of week 1, finished my training and next week I will go out an pimp myself out for business. I have asked for some information this morning and as at 5pm I still haven’t got it, so looks like I am going to be working over the weekend..this is what I hate, you ask for something, it doesn’t get done, and so you apply small pressure and they say, this British girl is worrying me…

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oh Ghana Man

I know I am not the easiest person to get on with, I am opinionated, I can get into a strop, the words sometimes come out before I think of the repercussions, I drink too much, I smoke to much, the list goes on. But I am a happy person in general and only get pissed off when someone intentionally pisses me off. I don’t just wake up in the morning and say, I am going to start an argument with X just because. In fact, if I do get to the point where I have to open my mouth and give you a bollocking, trust me, it was probably a long time coming. All I want, is that one person, just one, that I can say, I am in a relationship with, and it is going somewhere. I have been racking my brain trying to figure out, what a relatively, quite nice person like me is still doing single, and I think I have it, especially from the experience I have had with Ghanaian men. It’s emotions. I am just too darn emotional, plus I have yet to manage expectations. The truth is most men (this is based on the population size that I have encountered and that of my friends, before I am blasted) are fickle creatures. They are fairly shallow, and are looking for someone who is an angel in the kitchen and a whore in the bedroom but do not need to be bothered by things like your feelings, or any emotional needs that you require from them. Love is just a four letter word, and it comes out just as easy as hello or it never comes out at all. None of this Mills and Boons bullshit, romance means 5 minutes and if they really like you, a further 5 minutes for foreplay. If they put petrol in your car or change a light bulb, then girl grab him, he’s the one, because basically that’s as good as it gets.

Time, is what you get when he has nothing better to do, and don’t think just because he used to call you every day, he is going to keep on doing it. That’s the tactic he uses to get you into bed, once he’s popped that cherry, he doesn’t really need to waste time trying to impress you anymore.

Before I left for London, my auntie said, love with your head not your heart. If you want to go out with a Ghanaian man, that’s what you have to do, because once those emotions come in, and you start to wonder why he doesn’t care about your feelings, that’s when you get called a nag.

I am not saying that all men are like that. In fact I had a wonderful year long relationship with a wonderful guy back when I first got to Ghana. He was attentive, we spoke to each other every day, we used to go out for dinner, did the whole walk on the beach thing, it was the best 12 months of my life. Unfortunately, he was betrothed to someone else, I don’t know if he did what he did because it was to be a short term thing anyway, but even though it ended, I still think of him fondly, and he really is a nice guy (I can say that now 5 years later, now that I have got over the heartache).

I still don’t think all is lost. Especially when there are a lot of young men in the diaspora coming back to Ghana, which is why I am remaining cautiously optimistic. In the meantime I tell myself, watch out, for every nice (or semi-nice guy) there are 10 mother****s with an agenda, especially when there is a chance at a foreign passport at stake. Those ones are the most slick and the most dangerous, so be on your guard.

Although this may seem like another man bashing post, I would rather look at it as a public service email. And I would like to end this with a few top tips on signs to look out for if you are going to go out with a Ghanaian born Ghanaian man.

1. He must have traveled. I find, Ghanaians in general have a habit of putting people down, they have a can’t do attitude, and some can be very misogynistic. Even if he has been on holiday to the US or UK for a break while at school, he tends not to have that narrow minded view of the world.

2. He must be educated to degree level, and ideally at one of the big three: Legon, KNUST or Cape Coast. These polytechnics tend to give fancy titles to what is essentially half an A-Level. You know were in Ghana because we have been educated to a certain level so you don’t need no B-Tech boy, trust me, his reasoning is very different and a lot more open to a difference of opinion. Also, either his parents have a bit of cash or he has worked very hard to go to one of the top 3 universities, so less likely to find he’s another opportunist catching a ride on your dual nationality.

3. Beware of fake accents. If he is slanging you like Mike Tyson but the closest he has been to America is from watching American movies, he’s looking to hitch a ride there, courtesy of your dime. He’s as fake and dishonest as the accent.

4. If he says I love you within the first few weeks of meeting you, he is going to fall just as easily out of it after your first argument. The only person he loves his himself and is playing you for a fiddle.

5. Beware of the bragster. “I know this person”, “My father is a doctor”, “I used to drive a Harley Davidson” (even though today he is driving a 20 year old Opel). It’s all meaningless bullshit, don’t even entertain what he has to tell you next, because he’s spinning you a line. He’s an opportunist.

I went to an interview last week, and the lady told me that her motto was “I am not going to lower my standards just because you refuse to raise yours”. It’s a jungle out there and when you wake up one morning the other side of 30 it is a scary thought. But you have two options.

1. Look at it as a financial transaction, salaries are not so great in Ghana, especially when starting out in life so two salaries are better than one. Find that guy who can potentially be the father of your child, look after the home and just put up with it.

2. Keep those standards and pray for the best. Now I am not saying that you have to have unrealistically high expectations, men are men after all, there are some compromises we have to make, but if he doesn’t care to hear your opinion, or thinks that posting a picture of him hugging up a lady friend is not disrespecting you, maybe you need to think twice about entering into anything more with him. If he ignores you when you are ill, maybe this guy is not going to take you in sickness and in health. If he tells you that he is coming over, then doesn’t turn up, instead goes out drinking with his buddies, maybe you are not even on his top 10 list of priorities.

Whatever you do, go into it with your head, put aside those emotions, forget the “I love you, I love you”, that’s only for the movies. And most importantly, beware of men bearing fake American accents.

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