MY GREEN PASSPORT
Its been quiet sometime since I posted on here as I was planning my a backpacking adventure I plan on embarking. My first start will be from Mauritius and then to the next destinations accordingly. It was fun planning this trip as I kept thinking of all the fun I will have at all those places especially starting from Mauritius but right now, as I type from my hotel lobby in Maheborg- Mauritius, I don't feel that excitement anymore and that adrenaline which was rushing down my spine earlier on the onset of the travel is at its lowest point, as I was profiled on the green passport I hold.//giphy.com/embed/9Y5BbDSkSTiY8
Reading about Mauritius from other travel blogs and getting the impression that it is really a must see place, I planned a trip to this wonderful paradise where I will stay for at least two months and then move on to Madagascar and the other destinations. With Mauritius being a visa free for Ghana for 3 months I felt staying for two months it's within the time frame to visit all those places I want to see as i wanted to know this country extensively so there I booked a flight. My flight was from my home country Ghana where I transited through Johannesburg and Ethiopia respectfully and for 22 hours of lack of sleep and jet lag I landed at the airport in Mauritius. I was stunned by the view from the plane and even more impressed at their airport and how clean it was. Still in high spirit, I joined the arrival queue to get my passport stamped as fellow travelers were doing in excitement to see this beautiful island but my excitement was cut short when i got to the immigration counter.//giphy.com/embed/NWg7M1VlT101W
As a normal procedure, I was asked if it was my first time of which I nodded to, if I was travelling alone which was obvious I was am a lone travel but it seemed to raise an eyebrow of the immigration as to why I was traveling alone. Then I explained I being a blogger I was traveling to experience the tourism and blog about it on my website. Then he asked how much money I had on me of which I told him.
Still not satisfied, I was asked of an onward and return ticket which I provided. I had booked the onward flight from Mauritius to Madagascar on a ‘cheapone' website and printed out the electronic ticket, immediately I gave that to immigration officer he shook his head. I was like is anything the problem of which he said he doesn't know the website I booked ticket so he would have to confirm, if truly I booked a ticket. All this while I felt it was a normal procedure until i was called to talk to the supervisor . The questions which was thrown at me was like I am being interrogated for a crime or I was being profiled as a potential criminal. From why i choose Mauritius of which I explained fellow bloggers visited, immigration officer asked to see the blogger who visited Mauritius, i was like really? I don't even know this person, I only follow here as a fellow blogger how can she be a friend to call for you guys to talk to?. I had to open my blog for them to see,my Instagram account and all. All in all due to the constant bizarre and extremely upsetting questions which was thrown at me, i wasn't allowed to talk neither explain myself, it was as if the immigration officer already saw me in a way and my answer to his questions was irrelevant.//giphy.com/embed/3drmEWeOUgzKg
With this jet lag and lack of sleep I began to crumble slowly, as to why I was being treated that way. The hotel I booked was called so was my flight confirmed until I was allowed go.I had barely walked five minutes when I was stopped by the same immigration officer to open my bag for search. All my carefully packed luggage was scattered, ripped to the very roots of my luggage carrier being checked, at that level, I was like what is really happening, why am I a target clueless on how they seem me as a harm or threat with my petite frame and innocent face. After this ordeal of my green passport and one hour spent in searching my bag, I was finally let go and there was the cab driver waiting for me with my name on placard. He immediately noticed how depressed I looked and said the immigration called hotel thrice and I have been waiting here for three hours. I explained to him how I don't understand why i was interrogated that much. Then he said, people from your country and neighboring west African countries with your passport have been constantly caught either smuggling drugs or involving in illegal things here in Mauritius so immigration is very tight when you hold the green passport from those countries and you travelling alone, they felt you may be coming to involve in prostitution which most ladies do. I was like really? and he was like yeah giving me details into how people holding my passport have acted.//giphy.com/embed/l3vRhaxVcQ1i0CZlC
I was quiet through out the ride to the hotel, listening to the absurd things fellow passport holders have committed. In my mind i was thinking about this green passport and how I was profiled for holding it due to the crime of other holders. I kept thinking ‘why do some of my African brothers have to spoil it for everyone else? ‘why do they do things for innocent green passport holders be profiled? and when they are treated bad they blame it on racism. This isn't racism, Mauritius have equally black people but in truth this is the attitude and character of some Africans who want quick money whilst creating a bad name over others and when you are questioned or interrogated you blame it on racism. there is a fine line between racism and being cautious..//giphy.com/embed/26gJyIjHPa62RlWWA
I don't blame the immigration of Mauritius for doing their work…nein, I blame my fellow west Africans who hold the green passport and misbehave that is making it hard to be seen another holders good intention but rather from where you come from and what other people have done with my passport.
Even though I understood perfectly how the taxi driver explained to me and how the hotel receptionist confirmed same thing, somewhere down in me, my spirit just died. Right at the airport as I felt really bad as to why i was seen based on a green book.//giphy.com/embed/OPU6wzx8JrHna
Aside that, i didn't fail to notice, how beautiful Mauritius looked and how my hotel was overlooking a beach. right now my sense of adventure is damped but i hope i recover it soon and put the incident behind me.
I will appreciate recommendations on places to visit whilst i recover my sense of adventure. until then, the wolf is out!!!!//giphy.com/embed/VmAjNEnSaYFvq