The Cities of Kumasi and Accra in Ghana
Accra trip on 17 Dec 10
The next day, I got ready for my next excursion... a trip to "Kumasi", the capital of the traditional land of the Ashanti people (or "Asante" in the native language). We have all heard of the word "Ashanti" either through music or the media. They are actually an ethnic group that lives in present day Ghana. They have a King that is the symbolic head of the kingdom. The monarchy is based on matrilineal descent, and the King and his Mother (the Queen Mother) rule in a quasi co-regent status. Since it is matrilineal, the King's son does not take over the thrown when he passes. It is his sister's son that becomes King and the sister rules with her son as the Queen Mother. On our way to Kumasi from Accra, you pass some of the most beautiful mountain forests. We passed the house of the wife of the late Bob Marley. She moved to Ghana from Jamaica and now calls Ghana her home. It was a large house with a gate in front that had an image of Bob Marley singing, it was great. We then stopped at a Master weaving shop in a town called "Bonwire" near Kumasi. The traditional cloth of the Ashanti is the Kente Cloth. Men are traditionally only allowed to do the Kente weaving and women are discouraged from weaving. I was shown how the weaving was done, using the hands to thread the cloth and the toes of the bare feet to alternate between threads. It's an art form, and many of the cloths are colorful with yellows, reds, oranges and other colors in geometric shapes. It is woven in long strips...
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