For someone who has developed a love for local tourism, I was very excited when my lecturer mentioned visiting Atewa forest reserve as part of our class project on the effects of climate change on our environment.
The trip was scheduled for the 4th of July a beautiful Sunday morning. We journeyed to Eastern Region. I slept throughout the journey, don’t blame me, I was extremely tired from the other day.
When I opened my eyes, the bus pulled over at Anum Apapam Senior High School. We were told the bus couldn’t take us on the rest of the journey because of the terrible nature of the road.
We had breakfast, interacted with some of the students then set off in the bucket of the pickup truck made available.
Don’t get me started with the nature of the bad road ahead of us, all I wanted was to get to the final destination!
Because the road is hilly, the truck could only take a set at a time just to avoid any unforeseen circumstances. I personally had to close my eyes throughout the two hours most uncomfortable ride and pray to get to our destination safely.
That was all I cared about. And by God’s mercies, we got to the town safe. We stopped by the Christ Apostolic Church briefly because the tour guide worships there.
At the church, I saw pure excitement and gratitude to God for His protection. They danced, singed and finally got another prayer from the church for the final journey mercies.
From the church, we moved to the chief’s palace, the only building that wasn’t built with the traditional clay bricks. Libation was poured to pacify the gods and also officially inform them of our tour.
We started our journey into the forest area lead by the linguist. We walked for hours! Climbing and descending. After hours of walking, I felt very tired and said to myself I quit!
But when I turned around and saw some of my colleagues behind me very determined to get to the final destination, I got inspired. Step by step, we got into the renowned forest.
At this point, I could tell everyone was tired. The lecturer came to talk about the temperature in the forest comparing it to that in Accra. Obviously, it’s different, the more reason we’re all advised to plant more trees and stop cutting what we have.
Let’s continue was the next thing I heard. At this moment, I wasn’t having it at all, I was tired I just want to go back home, and oh, my colleagues share the same thought! They started complaining, then the lecturer said to us “let’s go for another 10mins.”
At least we know we’ve got 10 minutes to get out of the forest. We persevered, then stopped at the final point in the forest where we’re told illegal mining had taken place. When the lecturer asked what we make of the new location, all I could think of was how to journey back to the car, thinking of the terrible nature of the road!
When we finally had to return after few lectures, I slipped and fell while dodging a Millipede but that’s wasn’t the worst part. The worst part was to hold my breath and keep praying at the back of the truck carrying us for total safety.
I believe I would have had a memorable day with my colleagues if not for the nature of the roads that literally cut short our trip.
I hope something is done quickly about the roads if not for tourists but also for the people living in that community, who equally complained about the roads especially for the farmers who ply that root to get farm produce every day.