A Drummer's Testament
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Chapter I-5:  The Way of a Stranger and How a Stranger Should Live in Dagbon  <PDF file>

How Dagbamba behave toward strangerrs; being a stranger and traveling; the benefits of traveling; bad things that can happen to strangers; how a stranger should behave with the people

Paragraph outline and links
Proverbs and sayings
Dagbani words and other search terms

Contents outline and links by paragraph  <top of page>


1.    Benefits of traveling:  experience
2.    traveling is good; traveler gains experience and knowledge, knows more than someone who hasn’t traveled
3.    traveling shows you your standard

Traveling and death; traveling and life

4.    traveling compared to death
5.    explanation of the comparison
6.    a traveler has no identity; a traveler can die
7.    living and dying compared to traveling in the world
8.    the good traveling is to where you know people; not like death
9.    newborn babies have the name “stranger”; everyone is a stranger or traveler in the world

How being a stranger is bad

10.  traveler should not have expectations
11.  traveler can unknowingly stay in a house with bad people
12.  strangers are warned about dangerous places or things in a town, but not about which people are bad
13.  strangers and townspeople do not talk about other people to one another
14.  a stranger and townspeople will be watching one another
15.  stranger will learn about a town before leaning about the house where he stays
16.  a stranger does not know the town he visits
17.  a stranger can lose his wife to a townsperson
18.  a stranger can stay in a bad person’s house
19.  a stranger should watch his householder’s character or will face difficulties
20.  a good stranger can defend a bad householder
21.  a bad stranger’s acts can cause a problem for a householder
22.  a stranger needs to be watchful; importance of luck

How strangers are good

23.  it is good to stay some days in a town; the townspeople will not know him
24.  if stay some days, stranger will get to know the town
25.  a person cannot hide his character
26.  townspeople who see that a stranger is good can give a wife
27.  a good stranger receives unexpected gifts and benefits
28.  a stranger can get respect he does not get in his home
29.  a learned stranger can give benefits to a town
30.  a stranger can come to know more about a town
31.  how John has come to Dagbon to learn

How a stranger should live with the townspeople

32.  how a stranger should try to fit in with the ways of a town
33.  the stranger should eat the local food
34.  the stranger should know that people will be studying him
35.  a stranger should not be proud; should have patience and respect
36.  a stranger should greet people
37.  if a stranger does not greet people, people will not look after him
38.  if a stranger greets the townspeople, they will help him
39.  a stranger should accompany the townspeople, but should not enter their quarrels
40.  a stranger should bring gifts and greet
41.  how John gives gifts to old people
42.  give gifts to children, or food
43.  a good  stranger will get benefit in return


44.  end of talk on strangers

Proverbs and Sayings  <top of page>

A child who travels is wiser than the father. 

A person who climbs a tree will see something that a person who is sitting down will never see. 

If you want to watch the way of death, you should travel and leave your room and not put someone to stay in your room. 

God takes one town's prince and turns him to be another town's slave.

They only show the bad ways of a town; they don't show the bad people of a town.

To be a stranger is like the night.

To be a stranger, you are in darkness.

A tall stranger follows a short townsperson. 

"Had I known" is always at last.

A person will not leave his character.
What can you give a person and he will leave his character and not show it to you? 

A stranger is a stranger, but character is not a stranger. 

Get and taste:  that is when you will know whether you will be satisfied.

Good character can give you something big.

They say you cannot do anything; nothing has ever come to you.

If you were dancing a dance in your town, and you get to another town and they are dancing another dance, you should leave your town's dance and dance their dance.

Key words for ASCII searches  <top of page>

Names and people

Melissa (Pearson)
Sampaga  (Sampaɣa)
Stuart (Bluestone)
(Eric Rucker)

Towns and places

Cultural groups
Dagbamba, Dagbana

Miscellaneous terms