Arrival in Ghana

ARRIVAL
Months of meeting, weeks of planning and days of running around San Francisco like chickens with our heads cut off getting ready for the biggest leap of faith in our lives has taught us to have no expectations. Fair enough. We emerge from the sleek KLM jetliner that has brought us here from Amsterdam onto the tarmac at Kotoka Airport and are hit by a wall of tropical heat still sticky at 8 PM. We get our first taste of a possible charmed life ahead at customs, where the smartly uniformed agent takes a look at the mountains of gear and baggage I am wheeling and asks
"You are with a group?"
"Yes, there's 8 of us"
"Aha. You are missionaries then?"
"No, we're musicians."
"Oh! Musicians! Go right through then."
And just like that we sail through the customs booth and into the airport lobby, where Napoleon, the African Showboyz leader, greets us all with hugs and yells and directs the ten or so members of his entourage he has brought here to carry our bags, amps, guitars and drums through the swarm of would be porters and taxicabs to the sprawling dirt parking lot outside, where a bus- really a medium size flatbed truck with wooden benches and a roof- awaits. WE clamber aboard, everyone hauls our gear on board and we're off, the smell of diesel in our nostrils mixing with the warm tropical night air swirling around us as we pick up speed and barrel away from the airport. We then get the second indication that we are experiencing no ordinary trip to Africa, if there is such a thing. The 6 or 7 guys in the back of the truck are drummers Napoleon has hired for our arrival, and as we pull away they are in full swing- we are a raging drummobile zipping through the streets of Accra, a ragtag collection of Africans and white people on a truck raising a ruckus and drawing stares, nods, and more than a few appreciative honks from the taxicabs that pull up alongside to see what in the world is going on. After 20 hours on a plane straight to this we're overwhelmed, incredulous, and dumbfounded with joy- we've made it, and it's even better than we dared imagine.