The courtyard was overflowing with market stalls and sellers, people walking through to the beach, and 4x4s – evidence of its glowing reputation among expats. As we were shown to the reception, we passed a big screen showing the English Premier League. A big cheer went up as Man Utd scored a last-minute winner against City – I was beginning to think that Big Milly’s wasn’t my kind of place.
|A stall at Big Milly's|
Early Monday morning, Kokrobite beach looked similar to any other fishing resort along Ghana’s coast, a gentle hum of activity as people began their days. I walked down to the water, which was remarkably free of litter for such a popular beach. I made my way to the rocks further on – despite being 35, I still can’t resist looking for crabs in rock pools.
While Big Milly’s dominates the beach scene in Kokrobite, there is a village just behind. That afternoon, we wandered up the steep track to explore. Tourism has certainly made its mark: every other building was a restaurant or guesthouse, in varying states of repair and completion, but they are all overshadowed by the glitz of the star attraction.
Thirsty in the afternoon heat, we called in at a small shack. The overpowering scent of dope should have warned us what to expect: a rasta bar, and we were the only ones without the ubiquitous dreads-and-vest look. The smiling owner took our drink orders, and a man wearing a Bob Marley t-shirt and smoking a massive joint stumbled over.
“Hi”, he drawled, sitting next to us. “I am the King of Tanzania, but have left my kingdom to see more of my homeland, Africaaah!”
I smiled and nodded awkwardly, the standard British response in such situations. By the time we had finished, he was asleep in the corner, joint still smoking away. It was a fitting image to take away from Kokrobite.
|Football on the beach|