I did not see this moment coming, or perhaps I was told it was coming, but I ignored the signs and the warnings. Daniel and I met when I was four years out of university; I was a late bloomer in the love department. I had been running away from marriage. I did not understand the construct and why it was so important. I was accused of withholding my mother’s joy, ‘Ijo Ayo’ she called it. Then Daniel happened, and all hell broke loose. (more…)

I have always loved life. I enjoy to travel and explore the unusual opportunities available in the natural world. When I was younger, my parents would bundle my sister Nkem and me in a taxi, and we would travel to Ojota motor park where we would join one of the buses going to the villages. As we grew older and my parents became wealthier, we went on luxurious buses and eventually by chauffeur driven cars.

I missed the days we went on the small buses packed like a tin of sardines. There was always a stench that filled the air. There was a mixture of sweat, food and at certain times, I was sure I smelled urine. On those journeys, we would put our hands out of the windows to feel the fresh air. We would beg mother for her last fifty Naira note so we could buy some roasted Ube Pears selling by the roadside. I was always more keen to eat fruits when trapped on those long journeys. However, when wealth came, the trips were never the same. We never travelled like locals, the mobile police that escorted the cars would never let us stop, but I could still take photos via the tinted mirrors. By the time, I completed my university degree; I had not travelled by road in years. ‘The roads are not safe’; father would lament.

(more…)

I’m an unapologetic church whore. I move from place to place like a merchant trading her goods. It’s the place to find good husbands, good friends, new clients. I seem to focus so much on the search for the good that I never become good myself. I was never supposed to wander into my current church, but I did so by accident, and I stayed out of curiosity. It was a family church. They had a vibrant youth ministry for teenagers, but beyond that there was nothing more. There was no singles fellowship, all the people in their twenties were newlyweds. As a 26-year-old unmarried female, I stood out like a sore thumb. They say curiosity killed the cat, but in my case, it wasted my time.

He was the first person to shake my hand upon arriving in church on my first day, sweet smile, strong hands, muscles visibly ripping out of his polo shirt and a tiny tattoo of the cross on the underside of his right wrist. He was, at least, six feet tall, dark skin, 75% cocoa solids and a teeny weeny Afro. Brown eyes, standard, a nicely trimmed beard, and a chiseled jaw that would make any girl swoon. I soon noticed that he was an usher, a minister, a youth leader and a drummer, he knew everything about the church and everyone in the church knew him.

I never wanted to be married to a minister; pastors always seem to have a secretive life behind the pulpit, and I was not ready for that. I’d only recently broken up with a prayer pastor, and let me tell you that his Holiness did not extend to the bedroom. But this guy knew a different kind of Jesus, and every time I saw him smile in my direction I knew I had to stay. So I kept going back to his church, and then I volunteered in the youth ministry, I needed to get noticed fast. I began to learn things about him as I hung around, none of these things attracted me, but I stayed regardless. His name was Damilola, strike one; I hate unisex names on men. He was planning to go into full-time ministry, strike two, I already said I’m no Pastor’s wife, I’ve been around a bit too much for that. He was saving his first kiss for marriage and wanted a girl who had done the same. Strike three, curiosity had prevented me from waiting for anything worthwhile in life. (more…)

Credit: kentaro-art.com

Credit: kentaro-art.com

I remember the first time I heard the title of this book. I had initially giggled to myself as I considered the use of that phrase as the title of a novel. It is a catchy phrase. It is a well known phrase. It’s also a phrase that may cause some pain. History tells that when Nigerian’s had demanded the removal of Ghanian immigrants in the 80s, the Ghanians were forced to use the red, blue and white plastic bags to gather their belongings. Hence the term for the bags, ‘Ghana must go’. I had assumed that the book would relate to Ghana in some way. I assumed that it would tell the tale of the suffering of the displaced Ghanians. Instead, it told a different tale. A tale of suffering and displacement nonetheless. (more…)