feeding my own misguided insanity

I Always Thought I looked Eastern European

While wandering all over the world it is inevitable that someone will enquire as to your country-of-birth. The vast majority of these new encounters follow a relatively easy path; where you’re from, what you’re doing, how old you are or if you’re married – but some take you by surprise and lead you to completely new and unexplored regions. The following is a transcript of my conversation with a taxi driver in Accra.

Taxi: Are you American?

* I screw up my face *

Shem: No. What gave you that impression?

Taxi: You look American.

Shem: Really? I always thought I looked Eastern European.

Taxi: I know lots of Eastern European people and they don’t look like you.

Shem: So why do you think I’m American?

* he glances at me *

Taxi: You’re tall, your head is round and you have a pointy nose.

Shem: Hehehe, I’ve yet to meet anyone who doesn’t have a round head. You have a round head and you’re tall, you must be an American too.

Taxi: No because I don’t have a pointy nose.

* driver does not look amused *

Shem: Do you like Obama?

Taxi: Yes, he’s African and he came to visit Ghana.

Shem: You mean to say he’s of African ancestry but really he’s American.

Taxi: Do you like your president?

Shem: Obama isn’t my president because I’m not American.  Actually I’m not even sure who the president of my country is any more, there have been too many presidents since I left Australia.

* driver’s face lights up like a Christmas Tree *

Taxi: Australia – Oh, Kangaroo :)

Shem: Yes, Kangaroo.

Taxi: Are you married?

Shem: No, are you?

Taxi: Yes, but I’m going to have a divorce.

Shem: Why? Is your wife a bad woman?

Taxi: All the time I have headache. I work but my wife doesn’t want to, she’s lazy.

Shem: That’s not good.

Taxi: Even in the morning when the children wake up she doesn’t get up, I do everything in the house.

Shem: How many children do you have?

Taxi: Three – Boy 6 and two girls 5 and 4.

Shem: It must be difficult for your wife to look after them all when they’re so young.

Taxi: She does nothing but party with her friends at night and sleeps all day. She is not a good mother or wife.

Shem: That’s not good.

Taxi: When a woman has feelings for you she wants to be touched; my wife doesn’t want me to touch her, she never comes to me. We don’t have the sex. I do the tapping on the shoulder but she just sleeps.

* his hand constantly poking at the air as if she lay beside me *

Taxi: It is good you are not married; I want to be single too.

Shem: If you find a good woman you won’t have headaches, but it’s difficult to find them.

Taxi: I have found a good woman and she will be good to my children.

* his eyes glow brighter *

Shem: But won’t your wife take the children when you get a divorce?

Taxi: Everything we have will be cut in 3, for me, my wife and my children. But I will take my children because she is lazy.

Shem: Does your girlfriend have children?

Taxi: Yes, she has 2 children.

Shem: How old is she?

Taxi: She is 25 – much older than my wife.

* driver shakes his head *

Shem: That’s very young, how old is your wife?

Taxi: 23.

Shem: How old are you?

Taxi: 41.

Shem: Wow, we are almost the same age.

Taxi: No, you are very young.

Shem: Trust me; we are like twin brothers – same age, tall and round head.

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4 Comments → “I Always Thought I looked Eastern European”

  1. Stan R 5 years ago   Reply

    awesome, look forward to more travelling stories and experiences

  2. Scott P 5 years ago   Reply

    Need a double-like for this one. Brilliant

  3. Micah vK 5 years ago   Reply

    never get into a taxi if the driver says you have a pointy nose. evidence suggests that the driver is blind.

  4. Edward Reid 5 years ago   Reply

    I never thought I could laugh so hard :)

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