Posted on May 27, 2010


Just around the corner from Vic Baboo’s famous Adum Restaurant, a tourist landmark here in Kumasi, across the street from the lower side of BARCLAY’S BANK and across the street from the front of the NATIONAL INVESTMENT BANK, is a small, somewhat neglected bookstore. The only sign in front declares in white paint MEDICAL BOOKS AVAILABLE on a plywood board.

Well, there’s lots more available than just medical books. Recently, a large shipment of second-hand books most still in boxes arrived

boxes of second hand books

Well, what a treasure trove of titles and authors! It was like going down memory lane meeting favourite authors and titles from my youth. There was Michener and The Drifters, Ken Kesey and Sometimes a Great Notion, James Baldwin and Another Country, Bernard Malamud and The Fixer, Philip Roth and Portnoy’s Complaint, Henry Miller and The Tropic of Cancer, and even a Canadian classic Mordecai Richler and St Urbain’s Horsemen to name but a very few.

How lovely to discover in the most unlikely of places so many books that marked the passage of an earlier life of far away and long gone. I was tingling and with each revelation, my gleeful “ohs” broke the silence of the bookstore.

Mr Boateng at his bookstore

And I made a friend too, Mr. Boateng, the lovely ole proprietor, who was so patient with me. Ya see, most of the books were stacked one on top of the other making it hard to browse the offerings. So I asked permission to rearrange the books spine forward so customers could effortlessly read title and author. With in no time flat, I was busy grunting and oh-ing for more than an hour.

How pleased Mr. Boateng was! He had made a new friend and his store was gradually taking shape. How pleased I was! I had made a new friend and my new Adum haunt was gradually taking shape.

Posted in: Uncategorized