I decided that while I was in Ghana I would check out a possible business venture. I met Patrick online because he posted about his company needing marketing help. His company was just getting started and he was researching, testing, and using his own funds for fish feed, the aquaculture field. I thought that was admirable and I could immediately see a possible marketing angle to reach the fish farmers. I also had a keen interest in the topic as I read about it as a past time on home fish farming. We started chatting online and I met with him about me assisting with his fish feed’s product line. We hit it off and began correspondence for moving it forward.
Patrick explained that he always went “in to the fields” to get to know the fish farmers. I was already down, well, because it’s on the go, where I belong. We were set to leave to some rural parts of Ghana. Before we left he told me to check with my husband to be certain it was ok. “Darling, are you serious? Where they do that?” No, he will understand because this is business. This topic actually was a part of the agenda of 2 of our meetings, as I was the only lady with himself and another guy who was over accounting. I let them chatter about this supposed issue and told them I would be ready when the time came. I also had to decline being the secretary and taking notes for each of the meetings. I suggested that we each take turns until he found someone to hire for such a duty. The note taking became less of an issue when it was their turn to write for the meeting.
We set off on the bus and it took a while to reach over the horrible roads and bad traffic, but we finally did. We did not stay at a hotel, as that was not in the budget. We stayed at a friend of a friend’s house on a compound. Compound life in rural Ghana is interesting and very communal. I love it! When you wake up you greet the elders sitting outside waiting on everyone to wait on them. haha – now that’s the ultimate gig. The younger girls fetch water to warm in the open fire pot so everyone can take a shower, and another team of ladies get food ready. All this while the children are playing and the different types of chicken and fowl are clucking about the yard.
We awoke early the next morning – the part I am not a huge fan of. It seems that all over Ghana a regular and normal time to begin calling people and knocking on doors is 7a.m. Yeah, too early. I think 9a.m. sounds MUCH better. Anywho, we set off on dirt roads and fields to visit the handful of fish farmers in the area. The goal was to give out samples and also to sell for future orders. Patrick’s challenge was his youthfulness in his age and the age of his business, so I consulted that he focus on his empirical data and research and show that information. It was working! Many of the fish farmers were particularly interested in his price points too.
We walked and caught taxis all day and did not finish until the sun went down. We were both dirty, dusty, and hungry.
“What will you be cooking us tonight?” he asked.
“Not a damn thang.” was going to be my first response, but then I did not want my Alabama southerness to come out so instead I balked. My next reaction was to chuckle as surely he was joking, right? We both had been in the fields all day and you’re asking me what I will be cooking. That’s a quick way to get cussed out.
I informed Patrick that I would not be cooking. His company would either be paying for us some street food or providing the food to the compound so they could cook. As for me, I will be there to eat alongside of him. He only half smiled and got quiet.
Patrick is in his early 20s, dark and handsome. With his passion for the business he is definitely on his way because of his entrepreneurial mindset. As in Ghana, and in many other countries, he lives with his parents at this moment. He talks all the time about his land and how he will build a house before he marries so his wife and he can immediately start their family. Does he sound like a good catch, ladies?
*Latoya ended up having to quit the team because it seemed to always be a question as to her loyalty because she was posting on Facebook about all the fun places she was going and enjoying her time while in Ghana. As per Patrick, women do not go out like this all the time. He asked Latoya for the 3rd time about her being loyal to the company and Latoya quit so that she would not hold up any more of his mental agenda as to what she was doing on her own time. Now you can read the embarrassing journey of being in a scam of a marriage – Wanted: Green Card