This Sunday, I marked two decades on this planet and one month in this fantastic country. Yep — I will forever tell anyone who will listen that I celebrated my twentieth birthday in Ghana! I was a little bit nervous about my first birthday away from home, but thanks to my amazing “fam” here, I had an incredible weekend full of good food and lots of laughter.
Celebrations started on Saturday with dinner at Burger & Relish, a restaurant in Osu. With quirky artwork on the walls, marquee lettering behind the bar, and a full menu of elaborate cocktails, it felt like stepping into a mini-Portland: home away from home. The group played Taboo, Jenga, and Scrabble as we waited for our cheeseburgers (which were amazing!).
After dinner, the group went home for cupcakes and a rousing rendition of “Happy Birthday” before going out to dance in Osu. It was quite a night, complete with 50 Cent (“we gon’ party like it’s yo birthday”) and a DJ shoutout (Thanks, Emma…).
Sunday morning started with a surprise: two of my coworkers showed up at my house with a beautiful cake and a gift! Unfortunately I was in the shower when they arrived, and they had to leave to go to church, but I was so touched.
Later that morning, a few of us took a tro-tro to the Accra mall for coffee and pastries (a rarity here). A monsoon foiled our plans for a beach trip in the afternoon, but it was nice to spend a relaxing day inside with my book and the incredible friends sharing this study abroad experience with me.
Even though it’s Monday morning and I have a full week of work ahead, I still feel a bit of that birthday glow. This weekend was a great combination of familiar joys and Ghanaian adventures. Like the rest of this experience, my twentieth birthday was unforgettable. I’ll probably still be talking about it when I turn eighty — stay tuned.