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July 11th, 2009
11:59 PM ET

Anderson in Ghana: Obama and spider bites

Program Note: Watch Anderson's interview with President Obama on AC360° on Monday at 10 p.m. ET.


Anderson was bitten by something during the night. Here's his picture for proof.

Anderson Cooper | BIO
AC360° Anchor

@andersoncooper: just interviewed the President. We walked around Cape Coast Castle with him, it's a former dungeon for slaves heading to America.

@andersoncooper: we walked through the "door of no return," the portal thru which slaves were sent to the New World. Talked about the ...

@andersoncooper: ....impact of it on him and his family. Outside hundreds have gathered to get a glimpse of Obama....

@andersoncooper: playing endlessly, everywhere, is a ghana hi-life song "Bar-ack, Bar-ack. Bar-ack O-Bama." It's by a band "Black Rasta"..

@andersoncooper: ..its one of those songs that's catchy at first, but gradually drives you insane..like 99 Luftballoons. Remember that one?

@andersoncooper: forgot to mention. During the night I got bitten by something on my left eyelid.. Maybe a spider. When I awoke, my eyelid was ....

@andersoncooper: my eyelid had swollen nearly shut. Not the kind of thing you want to have happen before interviewing the President...

@andersoncooper: In my mind I looked like Sylvester Stallone in "Rocky". In reality i looked more like Mathew Broderick in the movie "Election."

@andersoncooper: luckily, by the time the President arrived it had gone down significantly. "Not so bad," he said to me as he sat down.

@andersoncooper: now its nearly back to normal..still a little swollen. I took a picture for the ac360.com blog. I'm about to go to bed.

@andersoncooper: I think I'm going to sleep with the lights on.

Follow all of Anderson's twitter updates @andersoncooper.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Anderson Cooper • Ghana
soundoff (116 Responses)
  1. Casey

    That's too bad about Anderson's eye.

    He was bit by the travel bug but this incident would make a great plotline on "Fringe" .

    July 12, 2009 at 8:17 am |
  2. ann

    Anderson:
    Thanks for the Tweets!
    Looking forward to your interview with the President. I hope your eye is doing better now and that the swelling is gone. Hope you and the team have a safe trip home.

    July 12, 2009 at 8:04 am |
  3. Lisa L

    Hello Anderson,

    Hopefully you have had the eye checked out and the room has been sprayed.

    I look forward to seeing your interview with President Obama.

    Sincerely,

    Lisa L
    Sydney, Australia

    July 12, 2009 at 7:51 am |
  4. Sheeners

    I can't really tell there was a spider bite from the picture.

    July 12, 2009 at 7:50 am |
  5. Annie, Beijing, China

    thank god, your eye looks better. I'm afraid your left eyelid was swollen badly when I knew this news from twitter. please be careful when you sleeping~~ btw, nice picture~~

    July 12, 2009 at 7:49 am |
  6. GLORIA BLUEDELL

    Oh my God !!

    July 12, 2009 at 7:44 am |
  7. Jacqueline, NY

    LOL! Awww, you poor boo-boo! lol!

    July 12, 2009 at 7:02 am |
  8. Fay - California

    So Anderson, what was more painful, the spider-bite or having to hear that "Bar-ack, Bar-ack O-Bama" song over and over again?

    I really enjoyed reading your Twitter posts from Ghana – they were both informative and funny and I'm glad that you've recovered nicely from the spider bite – although I was kind of hoping to see a pic of you with your eyelid swollen shut... 😉

    Looking forward to your interview with President Obama.

    July 12, 2009 at 6:48 am |
  9. Sergio Flores, Sweden

    You are such a good trooper. Just make sure your own doctor checks that eyelid when you come back. Who knows on whom's eye that spider been before. 😉 Best wishes and btw that is a great idea to put your tweets on the blog. Easy to follow the course of events. From Stockholm, @SergioFlores_

    July 12, 2009 at 6:12 am |
  10. Rick

    I hate when that happens...

    July 12, 2009 at 5:56 am |
  11. Ellie B

    Love the pic Anderson.
    I hope your ok now!!!!!!
    Take care.

    July 12, 2009 at 5:40 am |
  12. Josh from Tiffin, OH

    Can't wait to see the interview. Good idea to leave the lights on.

    July 12, 2009 at 5:30 am |
  13. dann

    About the spider and the obama . Mr. president i will put u in my prayer .God bless you you and ur family

    July 12, 2009 at 4:02 am |
  14. Lilibeth

    Oh, sorry about the spider bite. It doesn't look that bad. That aside, you got to be with the prez in Ghana for his historic visit! You are so lucky! I'll take the spider bite any day; well, maybe not. At least you have Dr. Gupta to call. Hope the rest of your trip goes more smoothly.

    Lilibeth
    Edmonds, Washington

    July 12, 2009 at 3:15 am |
  15. Ralph Williams

    I was watching the military channel and it shows how many trilions and trilions of dollars spent on WAR. If all the countries would just stop the fighting there probably wouldn't be anymore poverty in the world. Everyone would have a home and plenty of food. Doesn't everyone know were on this world togeather. Please Stop and wakeup before we kill everyone on earth and there will be no more starving humans. We only have one life and one world.

    July 12, 2009 at 2:56 am |
  16. C.Caulien

    Hi Anderson Cooper,

    Thank God you survived the bite you had. The risk you take as a person is awesome. Please be mindful with what you are dealing with. I know you are well travelled and experienced. Be smart is all I have to say. You will run into things as you go the outcome is really up to you. Your in charge so be careful and stay alert.

    I'm wanting to share with you my thoughts regarding the Michael Jackson death. It's nothing important and I will send an e-mail once your back.

    Take caution while you are travelling,
    God Bless...
    C.Caulien

    July 12, 2009 at 2:50 am |
  17. Angelique Sims

    Hope you get better real soon Anderson.... stupid spider that bit him, hope it dies!!!!!!!!!! =D

    July 12, 2009 at 2:17 am |
  18. Nancy D

    Hi Anderson- thanks for your awesome coverage; you get to do such fun stuff! Hope your poor eye feels better soon, may want to try an ice pack for some relief... and wear a mosquito net, unless you can find a spider net, lol… take care & stay safe!

    July 12, 2009 at 1:34 am |
  19. lynne

    Anderson, was the "door of no return" the one that was in the movie Amastad?
    I live in Chicago and the Field Museum of Natural History has an excellent African exhibit showing the slave trade–it really makes you realize the horros of it. The slave trade was inhuman

    July 12, 2009 at 1:31 am |
  20. lynne

    It doesnt look that bad. Was the eye itself blood shot, any vision problems, itching or stinging in the eye?

    July 12, 2009 at 1:28 am |
  21. Klim Andreev

    Poor Anderson, you look like you just had fist fight with Obama.

    July 12, 2009 at 1:10 am |
  22. Janine from PA.

    Have that looked at Mr. Cooper, it could be poisonous. Just saw the first family emerge from AFONE on their way back to the white house. Must be fun as a kid traveling on a plane like that. Get back safely yourself, Mr. Cooper.

    July 12, 2009 at 1:09 am |
  23. SG

    It doesn't look bad Im sure it will be just fine.

    July 12, 2009 at 1:04 am |
  24. Nilo from Los Angeles

    Looks like an alien is about to pop out of your eye

    July 12, 2009 at 1:04 am |
  25. Brett Ojiyi

    I was listening to CNN, about Barrack Obama trip to Ghana, Africa. Repeatedly, CNN caster used the first trip to Africa. I think it should be second trip to Africa because our President (Barrack Obama) had visited Egypt which is North Africa.

    July 12, 2009 at 1:01 am |
  26. Donna Orsborn, Las Vegas, Nevada

    Sleep, no way would I get back into that bed, ha. I'm looking forward Anderson to seeing your interview. The trip must have been quite an experience and It's great that you get to share some of it, thanks again.

    July 12, 2009 at 12:51 am |
  27. An

    Hi Anderson.

    Hi Bloggers.

    Hi Anderson, your picture looks so not all right, because it is really dangerous that you may have to use some of the preventive spiders bite medicine to treat your eye as fast as you may be able to do! I trully wish you may be able to treat your eye in the safe time. I wish you may will be ok with this so unfortunate thing that happened during your hard work time. Please be careful enough!

    An

    July 12, 2009 at 12:24 am |
  28. abra king yung

    hmmm... you are suppose to be sleeping...circles under the eyes could look worse! it's hard to say what's wrong w/ your eyes, but if u say they are swollen, sure they are... 🙂

    July 12, 2009 at 12:20 am |
  29. JoAnn in NY

    Hey, Anderson. The same thing happened to me in Puerto Rico. My experience was a little bit worse. My left eye was swollen shut from the upper lid and my right eye was halfway shut from the bottom lid. I had several other baseball sized bumps on my face and my neck and arms. Mosquito bites. I swell up from them all the time, but I"ve never had so many in one night. My sister stifled a scream when she saw me. Your swelling went down pretty quickly, I had mine for several days. But it was ok. You didn't look bad at all in the picture. Use a mosquito net and some repellent. Take care, Anderson. 🙂

    July 12, 2009 at 12:14 am |
  30. Michelle Johnson

    It sounds like Anderson went to sleep without getting a medical check-up to make sure there was no slow acting toxin. There are insects with potent bites in that area. An unknown bite shouldn't be brushed off.

    July 12, 2009 at 12:13 am |
  31. A. AZ

    Was the interview with President Obama solely regarding Cape Coast Castle?

    Spider bite? Shouldn't someone monitor him in case he starts climbing walls or spinning webs?

    July 11, 2009 at 11:55 pm |
  32. Jeannette Kucan

    Hey Anderson,
    You are brave if you want to sleep with the lights on! I don't think I would want to see what bit me.It must have been erie walking through Cape Coast Castle. Just imagine the history behind it. And to think you actually got to see it first hand. I hope your eye is better.Try neosporin you probably don't have a first aid kit with you.Well I'll be watching the show Monday. Take Care!

    July 11, 2009 at 11:53 pm |
  33. SpicaSeven

    A, please be careful; does it hurt? I hope not....take care 😉

    July 11, 2009 at 11:53 pm |
  34. Maureen from Apple valley, California

    To AC: I know you probaly don't think its a big deal and all especially because the swelling has gone down but when you come back to the states you should go see an Optometrist and get your eye checked.

    July 11, 2009 at 11:46 pm |
  35. Cindy

    Sorry for laughing Coop but it is too funny! Every time you all go anywhere one of you ALWAYS gets bitten! I guess it's the hangin' with Cooper curse and you got tagged this go round! LOL

    Hope your eye feels better. But honestly I can't tell the difference! LOL

    Cindy..Ga.

    July 11, 2009 at 11:41 pm |
  36. Jasmine

    I think ya could have pawned it off on allergies! 😀

    July 11, 2009 at 11:40 pm |
  37. Jerod Opsal

    Terrible dear Anderson. Alaska fan hates spiders. Ikkk.

    July 11, 2009 at 11:39 pm |
  38. Vanessa TX

    Soo sorry about your incident..maybe you'll have super powers! Spiderman..lol It doesn't look that bad. Take care..glad you're tweeting! 😀

    July 11, 2009 at 11:33 pm |
  39. Lori from IL

    Anderson - Thanks for the photographic proof! And the behind the scenes tweets. Saw a bit of your interview on CNN - looks to be pretty interesting. Looking forward to AC360 Monday and Tuesday night and the CNN special next weekend. Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip, get some rest (with the lights on!) and have safe travels on your return.

    July 11, 2009 at 11:32 pm |
  40. Keith Gillis

    I visited Ghana 8 years ago and the tour guide at Cape Coast Castle lifted a prayer that one day an African-American president would visit the "Door of no return". It was such a profound statement and life changing experience that I wrote about it in my book, My Quest To Ghana. Today this prayer has been answered.
    (see myquesttoghana.com)

    July 11, 2009 at 11:13 pm |
  41. Jen, Albany NY

    @ anderson Love twitter, just got home from the city.. Checked my twitter updates and read about your interview, can't wait to see it next week, sounds very interesting. Ouch!, sorry to hear about the eye, chuckling about the Sylvester Stallone "Rocky" comment. Very funny 🙂 Oh my word, I can not get the 99 Luftballons song out of my head now. I'll be singing it all night! 🙂 Hope you and your team have a great time for the rest of your trip. Safe travels. 🙂

    July 11, 2009 at 11:06 pm |
  42. theresa

    hello anderson!! i am wondering how big that spider was.you,re eye does not look too bad !! maybe hope that the bed covers don,t fall to the floor during the night they sometimes crawl up that way.i sometimes get spider bites during the summer as i live in a basement suite i think they get up the bedskirt .take care!!!

    July 11, 2009 at 10:56 pm |
  43. Margaret

    Warm teabag that is.

    July 11, 2009 at 10:50 pm |
  44. Jamie Rose

    Well, I must say I am disappointed by your eye. I was hoping for something really juicy. Just put a cold compress on it, take an aspirin and call me in the morning.

    July 11, 2009 at 10:50 pm |
  45. Margaret

    Sorry about the bite! I hate being bitten and hope it feels okay soon. If you can put a teabag on it that should help. Thanks for your reporting.

    July 11, 2009 at 10:50 pm |
  46. tammy, houma

    oh the drama and benedryl moments! looking forward to the interview. again, be safe.

    July 11, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  47. Valerie Britt

    AC360 It was a bite of the Love of the AllAfrica Bite to Welcome you to the area not malaria LOVE YOU

    July 11, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  48. Gale N.C.

    Anderson, how do you keep up the pace and find the energy and enough hours in the day to do your job? You do a great job, but I can't help but wonder what it would be like to be "Anderson Cooper" for a day or two.
    The mother in me came out when I read you had a spider bite on your eye......I really wanted to say, "Put some ice on it, Anderson". Once a mother, always a mother, for me. Too bad that isn't true for all mothers. If you were my son I would have gotten you on the phone to get all the details. Glad you are going to be fine. You must be one tough and determined man to walk in your shoes everyday..........g

    July 11, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  49. Jolene, St. Joseph, MI

    I feel for Anderson and his bug bite on the eye. It reminded me of the time when I was bitten by something on the eye during a house party and it itched like there was no tomorrow. My doctor prescribed something for the itching which I took and then decided to lay out by the pool of which I feel fast asleep only to wake up 4 hours later not only with a swollen eye but an incredible sun burn! 😯

    Thanks for tweeting! Looking forward to the interview and reports coming out of Ghana!

    July 11, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  50. Diane N.

    It doesn't look that bad AC!!! You just be careful! Walk tall and carry a rolled up newspaper. Hope you're having a great time over there. Come home safely.

    July 11, 2009 at 10:11 pm |
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