Good luck sleeping past then.
As a guy who likes to sleep until the last possible moment, and then some, it was a mighty harsh welcome when I heard the kids screaming, the women selling, and the men arguing at 6 AM.
And apparently, the rooster has no regard for normal rooster standards either as it will cock-a-doodle-do whenever he/she pleases. The attitude on that thing, damn.
What I’m trying to get across here is: as soon as that sun crosses the horizon, the city buzzes to life. The days here start early.
It was frustrating at first, but now that I’ve gotten (sort of) used to it, I find it interesting. Now I know, some people start early back in Toronto as well, but I would say society as a whole starts at 9 AM – i.e. when the average work day starts. That’s not the case in Accra. It seems that society starts when the people want to start and this begs the question: why do the people want to start so early?
I have some thoughts.
I think people either start their days so early partially because they want to, and partially because they have to.
I’d say one reason society starts so early here in Accra is because it is situated in a part of the world with roughly only 12 hours of day light, year round. To be as productive as possible, it is necessary to get the most out of the day. Maybe society doesn’t want to start so early, but they’re forced to. They have no other option, they need to work, and (for many people) to work, they need the daylight – this is their livelihood. You may ask the question now, what about light sources that aren’t the sun? To this, I would point to a lack of reliable and consistent infrastructure and affordable, constant power.
Then, on the other hand, I also think that this may be a choice. From my observations to date, the informal sector is so large in Accra that this place isn’t bound by the confines of the formal sector’s 9-5 schedule. From what I see, if street vendors want to start selling at 6 AM, no one’s stopping them. If taxi drivers want to start peeping their horns at 6AM, no one’s telling them to quiet down. If the man cutting a tree wants to use his chainsaw at 6 AM, nobody is getting in his way. The day-to-day society has been defined by its people – in Toronto, at least in my head, we’ve got it reversed: we’re defined by our society. Maybe the people of Accra are rebellious – it’s inspiring, if so.
In my opinion, each mode of operation has its ups and its downs. Till next time.
P.S. Egg and bread just isn’t the same anymore. I’ve recently learned of another lady close to where I work. I may try her out once I open my fast for the day.
P.P.S. Oh yeah, I’m fasting. Ramadan started yesterday, more on this in another post!