A Facebook post reminded me of something I’d forgotten, a memory lost to time and the worries of life.
We were in primary four and he was my best friend in class, I talked about him all the time- my dad even teased me about him, calling me Lekan’s wife until the day I went to him as he washed his car and told him I didn’t like being called Lekan or anybody’s wife because I was too young to be married to anyone- I was just eight and a very serious child. Continue reading →
I’ve been in Benin-city for less than six hours and I’ve already heard the most outrageous (true) stories, laughed until my stomach clenched in protest and howled from every spectra of emotion from the things I’ve seen and heard.
I could write an essay, several actually; on what this city means to me. How the differing landscapes are as familiar as my name, or my ears receiving the flavour of Pidgin English makes my heart crackle and pop and how it is the language I’m most comfortable with, even though I first heard it after my seventeenth birthday. Perhaps it is the abundance of plantain and how you can get masses of it at prices that would shoot guilt daggers in you, or my favourite people calling this city home- especially that five year old girl who makes me believe in soul mates and past lives.
Maybe it’s the ease of conversation here, and the music with the words I don’t understand even if I twirl the rhythm around my fingers, as my mind uproots stories I am too lazy to sit in front of a computer and strike the keys that unlock the magic.
I should write “I love Benin-city”, but that is not wholly true; each time I scoop from the cauldron, the emotions are never the same. I’ll just write the truest thing- this town is where all my parts collide, where I am most capable of being me.
“I will NEVER call my son from his room to come and hand me the remote that’s next to me like my parents did.
#BreakTheCycle”- Chike Delic Obi.
So I saw Chike’s post on Facebook about breaking the cycle and a certain mocking comment “Don’t worry when the time comes” prompted this post.
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My grandfather liked to tell the story of how the world came to be. God gave man only one thing as he descended from heaven and that was a palm nut, he planted it and its leaves helped to make man’s shelter, kept the shelter and environment clean, provided kindling for his fire, the wine kept him from losing his mind in the harsh world he found himself and its fruit gave him two different oils. The oil from the pulp to make his soup and to be the bride of the king of food- roast yam (the man loved his roast yam!) and oil from the seed, or kernel if you like, to anoint his skin and hair and to save his children from evil and its manifestations like convulsion and fever. It was the second oil that put my brother and me in trouble many years ago.
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We’re still on the India Arie train, last week I put up Can I walk with you which is one of my absolute favourite songs and which I have listened to more than a hundred times this week.
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Yesterday morning I headed to my brother’s room in search of my headphones, he likes to ‘borrow’ them and keep them in his room until I go on a retrieval mission. He was trying to cling to the last wisps of sleep but I snatched them out of his grip by shaking his feet and hitting his ankles.
“you’re awake” he mused Continue reading →
Earlier today, I was browsing through the videos on my phone looking for redundant videos to delete. I have dozens of videos that were donated to my phone from WhatsApp groups and a certain friend in obodo Amelika who sends me every funny video he discovers and the unfunny, scary ones too. When I got to the December 2016 videos, the thumbnail of one of them brought back memories that had me chuckling even before I opened the video. Continue reading →