We left Nalerigu in August of 1970, to return to the US,
just before my 14th birthday. Some of the sadness
of leaving included leaving behind my
who was about 6 months old. When the time came to actually
drive away, I can vividly remember sitting
on top of Dad's white veterinary truck with my sister
and two brothers and sadly waving goodbye to Sandow and
our other Ghanaian friends who were standing in our driveway.
With tears rolling down, I couldn't imagine how I was ever
going to see my Ghanian friends again.
Susan, Clint, me and Cary sitting
on top of Dad's truck. We were in Ouagadougou, Upper Volta
(now called Burkina Faso).
I corresponded with Sandow and Alando and a few others, for
several years while I was in high school.
Sandow and Alando were great writers. Looks like this Air Mail letter cost 9 pesawas which was equivilant to 9 cents back then.
They both were great writers and would fill me in on
the lastest news. Both continued their education through Secondary
They would often tell me how much they had grown. They
became handsome men. Below is a picture Sandow sent me that
I treasure. This is what he wrote on the back: "December
25, 1973, Looking from left you have Moses Alans, S. S. Sandow,
Alfred Yisah and finally at the right Joe Bantanga Salifu. Picture
taken by George Chringa at the church after church service.
What do you think of these four boys since you left Nalerigu?"
4 years we stopped sending letters. Or maybe I stopped sending
letters, being quite distracted by my own teenage activities.
(I'm so glad I saved all their letters.)
In my twenties I started having dreams about Sandow. In my
sleep I began looking for him. I would get very excited and
happy after a "Sandow dream" because I was back in
Ghana. In my landscape of dreams I revisited the house were
we lived, walked through the village and had many strange adventures
looking for him. I don't remember how many years the dreams
continued until there he was. Then I found him
again and again. Each dream we were so happy to see each
other. The dreams eventually stopped.
I wanted to return to Ghana for many years and wondered what
it would be like to see my friends again.
Angels along the way...