19 June 2006

The Euphoria

I stand up at the perfect time, because the bench I was sitting on just moments ago is hoisted up above someone's head as they run into the street. Two elderly gentlement climb the metal facade of the electronics store we are crowded around, shaking the walls and bringing the shops tin roof to a loud rattle. The rattle can scarce be heard among the screaming of the people, however, and in an instant the streets fill with children, women, elders and shopkeepers. We are celebrating a goal Ghana has scored against the Czech Republic in just the second minute of play. It has been the earliest goal scored in the 2006 World Cup, and Ghana's first in World Cup history.

Ghanaians can hardly believe what they have witnessed; Ghana is ranked #48 in the world against the #2 Czechs.

After the first goal, almost everyone in town crowds around the few stores which have televisions. Ghana's national broadcaster, GTV, can be picked up by any antennae, making it very easy to receive the signals live from Germany.

The next 90 minutes proves as exciting, with Ghana getting many more chances and dominating most of the game. The final result was 2-0 for Ghana; which went against all odds and predictions. The streets filled with people through the rest of the night, and the party would last for several more hours.

Just when I thought the streets of Tamale could not be more lively, more stunning for the senses, or more fascinating, Ghana blanks the Czechs, and the relative chaos in which these streets operate on a normal basis seem calm in comparison.

I hope you will join me in cheering on Ghana in the FIFA World Cup for the remainder of the tournament.


Anonymous Paolo said...

Hey Kyle,

I was cheering for Ghana yesterday, but I won't be cheering for them against the USA. A Ghana win would eliminate Italy if Italy loses to the Czechs. Italy automatically advances with a US win regardless of the outcome of their match against the Czechs. Any other time but unfortunately my motherland is in the same group. I can just imagine the chaos if I were there with you when Ghana played Italy. I don't know how the locals would have reacted to my celebration to the Italian goals. Nevertheless, good luck for Ghana the rest of the way. It would be nice to see Italy and Ghana advance.

18 June, 2006  
Anonymous Marika said...

Hey Kyle, I'm so glad you posted this because I was going to ask what the reaction was like. I'm actually going to England to see some family the first two weeks of July, so when/if England makes it the the finals, i'll be there for the celebration, which I'm pretty excited for. But of course, I've been following Ghana's performance closely, and I was pretty impressed, it must be awesome to share this with the community. I love the way the world comes together for the World Cup... its like nothing else. I always thought of it as the only time all countries can compete on a completely level playing field.
Take Care hun

18 June, 2006  
Anonymous Jack said...

So, they beat the US.....must be sooo crazy there. I am jealous, everyone here cheers for whoever even if they are 1/16 German or whatever. Be nice to be in an actual World Cup nation right now, no? Acording to BBC, a popular text message making the rounds in Ghana is:
"After beating America, Ghana is now a superpower. Now we should get into nuclear enrichment!"

22 June, 2006  

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