Blessings from the Lake God: The Story of Lake Bosomtwe

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Over 300 years ago in the forests of Kumasi, Ghana, a hunter gathered his tools for his daily hunt. Day after day, he went out in search of game to eat and to sell, but as he went empty-handed, so did he return. the days past, the hunger increased, and still no capture from the hunt. He was growing furious and impatient.

In Kumasi, in the Asante Kingdom, the Asante people have a rule that there will be no hunting after every 40 days, with the hunt set to resume on the 41st day. That day marked the start of a new month, according to the Asante people, where the people are given the chance to rest and renew their energy for the month ahead. The day was sacred, and it was observed as such. Everyone knew this, including the hunter, however, he was desperate.

The 40th day arrived, and as usual, the hunter went out to the forest, only this time, he did not return home. Instead, he stayed in the forest and slept there until the 41st day, with plans to hunt, despite the day being deemed too sacred to kill.

As he scavenged through the forest, he came across an Antelope in the near distance. As any hunter would, he quietly watched and closed in on the Antelope until he was close enough to take the shot. POW! Went off the gun towards the Antelope, which immediately reflexed at the sound, making the shot miss the target. The hunter was successful in injuring the Antelope, but he did not kill it. His loss, as the Antelope ran to safety and away from the hunter.

Luckily for him, however, he was able to track the wounded animal by following the trail of blood it left behind.

He followed the animal until he saw it drinking from a pond. Slowly, he creeped behind the animal with his gun in hand. POW! He shot again. This time, hitting his target right where he wanted. The animal instantly surrendered to its death, falling into the pond.

Excited for his kill after days of unsuccessful trials, the hunter walked up to the pond confidently.

What he found in the pond, though, to his dismay and fear, was nothing like he would have imagined. He found nothing. Despite the pond being clear enough where he could see straight to the bottom, and shallow enough where it stopped him only in the middle of his legs, he could not find the dead antelope. It had simply vanished.

Upon his discovery, the hunter ran madly into the town to tell the story of the pond which had swallowed the dead antelope. He believed surely, that the pond had a charm, or carried the spirit of a god of sort. Frantically, he ran home, afraid that he was being punished by the pond god for defying the sacredness of the day by killing an innocent animal.

Running and running, he ran as fast as his legs could take him. Upon reaching the town, he did not hesitate to narrate the story to all who could lend him an ear. The story of the Bosom Twe. Bosom, meaning the lake god, and twe meaning the antelope.

From that day forward, the pond began to be referred to as the bosomtwe pond. That is until the pond grew over the years into a lake. Along with the lake, the nearby village grew into 35 villages along its banks, which has now reduced to 23 due to the expansion of the lake.

Lake Bosomtwe is now a growing tourist site in Kumasi, Ghana, with families visiting by the hundreds and thousands yearly. The story of the hunter and the antelope are still narrated to tourists as they visit to give them an understanding and deeper appreciation of the lake.

What still remains a mystery years later though, is what happened to the antelope that fell in the lake that was once a pond.

Sweet Palm Wine before hitting the water

Kitchen over-looking the hunter’s forest

Un-Lost

Found

 

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