Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Ghana Names

One thing I've come across in Ghana is that "Heidi" is very difficult for the Ghanaians to pronounce.  Fortunately I knew what my Ghana name was and introduce myself as Akua Heidi whenever I meet someone so now I have become Akua (pronounced a-qia) to everyone!! The usual response to my attempt at the local dialect is for them to laugh (in a good way) and smile and say "good, good" to me.  I've noticed that things are usually repeated twice here, just an observation so hopefully I don't drive everyone crazy back at home when I repeat myself as it is so easy to pick up these traits.

Some other common gestures are the "hissing" sound that they make to get someones attention....and it is quite loud! They also make this unusual noise when you are having a conversation, instead of saying "yes" or "okay" they say aaaaahuhhhhhhhhh.  I'm sorry I can't for the life of me figure out how to spell it so I'll just have to show you when I get home as I now find myself doing it all the time......much to Damien's delight I'm sure!  LOL.....  We've actually had some fun the last 2 nights comparing some slang words in each other countries....hahaha......I've learnt some real keepers from Ireland for when I get home but probably not any I could repeat here ;)

So the Ghanaian naming is very unique. Your first name is after the day of the week you were born, then you receive your other names after that. There are characteristics for each of these as follows:.

Monday - (male) Kojo (female) Adjoa - nurturing in nature, dependable and organized and protective of their family
Tuesday - (male) Kwabena (female) Abena - structured in nature, neutral in all matters and never takes sides
Wednesday - (male) Kwaku (female) Akua - fully in control in every situation, does not want to be told what to do, knows it all, is spontaneous, vibrant and cordial
Thursday - (male) Yaw (female) Yaa - quiet in nature and incredibly observant, they are generally listeners, not talkers, and analyzes situations very well
Friday - (male) Kofi (female) Afua - a leader, not a follower, temperamental but has a big heart, generally the instigator of everything
Saturday - (male) Kwame (female) Ama - likes to take control of family situations, runs the show, makes the rules but will go out of her way for others anytime
Sunday - (male) Kwesi (female) Akosua - passive, sensitive and warm member of the family, tends to be shy and likes to keep to themselves, usually the secret keeper of the family

Tomorrow we meet with the Board and Management from the Sunyani Teacher Credit Union.  Hopefully they are happy with our suggestions as we've put a lot of work into them...YES....I am actually working over here!

Heidi :)