LINZIE, THE WOODWORKER, IN GHANA

Posted on October 26, 2009

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Alhaji, Charity, Lindzie, and Chris pictured with THE ELECTRIC SAW!

Alhaji, Charity, Linzie, and Chris pictured with THE ELECTRIC SAW!

Well, a picture is a thousand words!. The electric table saw is assembled and in Alhaji’s workshop. Linzie’s comment, “Alhaji will be able to make a whole lot more money with this and he’ll last longer too.”

Linzie, who celebrated his 75th birthday  continued by saying: “I wish I was a young man. I’d be here giving advice to the woodworkers. Do you know Chris when they use an electric saw they don’t use a push stick or a gripper? I saw somebody at the wood village that was using an electric saw big enough to cut a horse in two just with his two arms and hands! I nearly died seeing that.  I had to turn away.”

woodvillageThe Wood Village at Sokoban is now just down the road from Four Villages. It just opened having been relocated from Anloga in Kumasi on the main Accra-Kumasi road. The move, not without protest, took years; but now the new complex is up and running.

If you are a woodworker,   Alhaj is just the fellow to show you about. Lindzie is taking back so many different types of wood to show the 200 members of  his woodworkers’ club in Houston, Texas. And Lindzie even has the prices. He’s positively aghast at the difference between what’s charged here for a piece of wood and the price charged in America. If only more value was added here….

All this reminds me of Peace Corps  Chris Martin’s quote in his piece ‘SOMEHOW” captured here on October 11th on this blog. Chris doesn’t advocate foreign aid: he sees sending expertise, advisors. I wonder if that premise is in that book Understanding Africa for Dummies mentioed in the previos post. Whatever,  I concur with Chris.

Ya see that’s the way it used to be in the years following independence; I refer to the 60’s and 70’s. People came, not money, in those years. Volunteers and contract people came for a number of years to work at the grassroot level along side the African. And they came for a number of years, not like the trend today. I refer to “voluntourism”, where kids come to work in orphanages for a month or two….Man, do I ever recommend experts in tourism development come here and guide the professionals at the  Ministry of Tourism and the Ghana Tourist Board.

Enough, here’s a picture that captures it all:

Alhaji and Lindzie

And to finish, thanks to Four Villages Inn,  Linzie had the opportunity to talk about his experiences in Ghana-Linzie has made four trips to Ghana in the last four years. He spoke very strongly on the need to preserve Ghana’s primary growth forests. He  expressed his profound shock at the fact that Ghana has lost over 70% of its primary growth forest.

Lindzie and Adu Gyamfi interview

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