Tuesday, November 7, 2023

If I Was Running For a Political Office...


Thursday, September 7, 2023

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Too Many Ads and Sponsors

It's been a long time since I've posted to my blog. Many years ago I used to wonder how people could neglect their blog and allowed it to turn into a ghost town. I guess now I know how that happens. Things change over time. The biggest change for me over the years has been changing my focus from a blog to a YouTube channel. Since I'm too lazy to write anything else, here is my most recent video about sponsors and ads we frequently see online.

Feel free to subscribe to my channel if you enjoyed this.


Sunday, January 8, 2023

Driving Adventures Update

In my last post, I shared some interactions I've had with the police over the years here in Ghana. I was hoping not to add to it so soon, but a few days ago I had another encounter. While driving through town, my wife and I stopped at a red light at a busy intersection (the one mentioned in my prior post where officers walk around your car to check to see you have insurance and registration stickers.) My wife hates going that way due to this, but I reminded her that we are not breaking any laws and we had current stickers on the car so we have nothing to worry about. 

When we came to the red light I could see the same officer who had pulled us over in the past from my rear view mirror. He was several cars behind us walking through the stopped vehicles. He walked right up to us and tapped on the window and motioned for us to roll it down. I did so and he said our proof of insurance was not scanning. This bothered me since he had not even tried to check it and had just walked up to us and made this statement. I pointed to the insurance sticker on the windshield that showed it was still in force until the end of next month. He insisted it was not scanning which means it must be counterfeit. He opened the back door and got in our car and told us to drive to the nearby police station. I could not believe this was happening again. 

When the light turned greed he told me to turn left at the busy intersection. I was not in the left turn lane or even the one next to it, but was in the third lane over and he told me to just turn on my signal and go left. I told him I was absolutely not going to turn left across two lanes of traffic in an intersection and ended up going straight for about half a mile before I could turn around and double back to the police station. When we got there he told me to come in. 

He then explained to me that there are many fake insurance stickers provided by third parties and they are not valid and it is against the law to use them. I told him this was a valid sticker purchased from a real insurance company. He kept insisting if it were, it should scan in his database when he enters the license plate. This still shocked me since he had still not even attempted to input any data into his phone. His co workers in the police station were just smiling and laughing. After a few moments of silence he quietly slid over a slip of paper to me that had scribbled the number 200 on. I told him I was not going to pay it. 

I realized that he did not remember me from our previous encounter so I reminded him that over a year ago he had pulled me over when our car had a recently lapsed insurance sticker on it. At that time he told me it would be 600 cedis or we would have to go to court where it would be more expensive. I told him I only had 240 which he immediately took and said I could go. I didn't have a problem paying a "fine" at that time since the insurance had in fact lapsed on that occasion.

I told him I was not going to pay any bribe today since I had not broken any law and had an active insurance on the vehicle. He kept saying we had counterfeit third party insurance which was against the law but I knew he was just trying to intimidate us. I told him we have been living in Ghana for over 6 years and we are not naive tourists. I told him I was pulled over two weeks ago by different police officer and they had no problem with my insurance then. I told him I'm sick of police trying to extort money from me because I am a foreigner. After several minutes he just handed me license back with an almost embarrassed look on his face and said we could go. 

I was later able to access the online insurance database he talked about. When I input our license plate, it showed an active policy was in force for the vehicle which shows that he was just lying the whole time, but I already knew that.