The dampness has gone and so have warm days, but nicer weather will be back later in the week. This fall has been beautiful and really doesn’t deserve a complaint just because today is seasonably cool, but it seems weather is always worth a complaint or two and a piece of most conversations. It’s either too hot or too cold, too windy or too damp. Today is too overcast.
Yesterday I was rummaging around in the eaves and found a bag filled with Ghanaian cloth and a few smocks, called fugus, all of which I had brought back forty years ago. One piece of cloth reminded me of a few dresses I had had a seamstress make for me. In Ghana my style of clothing wasn’t in the sort of dress but in the patterns and colors. The cloth market was one of my favorite places. I’d roam through the lines of sellers looking for just the right piece of cloth for my next dress. The cloth was sold from carefully built piles composed of rolled cloth, each rolled piece usually being three yards and placed in the pile first in one direction then in the other. The colors were easy to see, and it was easy for the seller to retrieve a single roll.
I am not a seamstress yet I made curtains for my bedroom in Ghana. I figured out how many yards I needed and bought the cheapest cloth I could find. It was brown with patterns in beige, pretty enough for curtains but never for a dress. I cut the cloth to fit across the three windows about halfway up then turned over the edges and hand sewed them. I then threaded strong twine through the edges and tied the curtains to hooks on the windows. They looked far better from the outside than the inside.
I even made a lamp shade. The one light in my living room hung down on a long wire from the high ceiling. It looked pretty ugly so I went to the market and bought a basket. Similar baskets, called Bolga baskets, are now sold for big bucks in the US., but in Ghana they were and still are fairly inexpensive. I took off the handle and cut a hole in the bottom of the basket then used pieces of a metal hanger to make a holder for the lightbulb. It worked wonderfully except during the rainy season when it became a bug magnet. In the morning, below the lambshade in the same size circle as the bottom of the shade, was always a pile of dead bugs. No big deal in Ghana.
I learned so much when I was in Ghana but I don’t count home decorating as one of them.