Om JohanEriksson

I'm Johan, a 26 year old Swede. Bought my first smart phone yesterday. Leaving for Burundi today.

First World Problems – The Paradox of Choices

Sometimes I daydream of a life as a subsistence farmer in Ghana.

What if you lived without electricity and running water and followed the life cycle shaped by your forefathers, deprived of that existential anxiety that seems to grow in modern youth? Whilst the youth get depressed because they fail to achieve the impossible task of reaching unrealistic goals and searching for a purpose in life, village days are spent working on the family’s farm. The satisfaction of harvesting and feeding your family fills you up with pride and allows you to sleep at night.

Krönikör Johan Eriksson. Foto: Alicia Sully

Krönikör Johan Eriksson. Foto: Alicia Sully

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Kategorier: Afrika, Fattigdom, Ghana

During the war, Bawku was notoriously know for its’ drive by shootings – Nakom, Ghana

A desynchronized symphony of chickens, donkeys, goats, dogs, crickets and school children wake me up at 7 o’clock every morning. I live with five other people in a tiny house next to the local primary school in Nakom, northeast Ghana. You won’t even find it on the map. Go ahead and give it a try…

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Kategorier: Afrika, Ghana
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Globalization’s mark is more vivid here than anywhere else in the world – Nakom, Ghana

Before leaving Accra for Nakom, I had the opportunity to visit a groundbreaking initiative. I came in contact with it through Reach For Change.

There are literary thousands of brilliant ideas idling out there without being realized due to lack of resources and opportunities. Reach For Change is a brilliant organization which support local entrepreneurs to achieve their dreams of a better society. They offer undiscovered talented minds a possibility to unleash the potential of their outstanding ideas. One of which is Street Library.

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Kategorier: Afrika, Ghana

A ceaseless matrix of stimuli. Its’ narrow alleys and inconsiderable shortcuts seem endless to me – Accra, Ghana

Perhaps due to a double whammy of prayers from both Muslims and Christians, my computer magically started working again!

So here we go.

My driver accurately maneuvers the car up the tiny winding mountain road. Nothing but uphill all the way through Virunga massive. Altitude somewhere around 1800 meters. Sun is about to rise.

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Kategorier: Afrika, Ghana

The story of Aime’s father being the first Burundian to have sex with a muzungo – Accra, Ghana

I’m one out of four people jammed in the backseat of a car. It’s hot. My left leg sticking to the policeman’s’ next to me. He’s holding a loaded AK-47 in his left hand.

It’s in the middle of the night. Somewhere in the remote jungle between Vugizo and Makamba, Burundi. Pitch black outside. Our cars’ headlight cutting through the darkness like a knife. Gilbert is driving like an absolute maniac. Way too fast in my opinion. Not according to him. I keep forgetting that another day at the office for him is driving military vehicles in war zones.

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Kategorier: Afrika, Ghana

A million different ways of doing things – Gasekebuye, Bujumbura.

My mouth is dry, my feet hurt and I’ve got a pounding headache. It’s the morning after Aime and Yvette’s wedding. What an unreal and amazing experience! If you ever get the chance to go to a Burundian wedding – grab on to it and don’t let go!

Waking up this morning, a joke by Irish stand up comedian Ed Byrne (check him out if you’re not familiar with his work) popped into my head: ”The best thing about getting married is to wake up the morning after and be like: Woohoo!! I don’t have to plan a wedding today!”

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Kategorier: Afrika, Burundi

”I heard gunshots 10 km away the day before. I called for military backup. But they were too late” – Kigali, Rwanda

Burundi was absolutely mind blowing and eye opening for me. As a white boy from a middle class home in Sweden. The beautiful and kind people I met. Their culture. All the delicious food I had. Their obsession with beer. People may say they drink heaps of beer in Germany or UK, but let me tell you this; it’s nothing compared to Burundi. They lo-hove beer! It becomes somewhat more evident there, since it’s the single one alcoholic beverage which they consume. No gin & tonic. No Cosmopolitan. Beer, period.

A lot has happen since I last wrote. I’m for instance officially the proud owner of a cow! Never thought I’d own a cow in my entire life. Her name is Mokunzi. It means friend in Kirundi. I got her from Gilbert (the UN solider I mentioned in the last post). We paid her a visit last week and she’s gorgeous! Yet another reason for me to return to Burundi.

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Kategorier: Afrika, Burundi