A Christmas To Never Forget
My Dad was invited to a Christmas party hosted by the Johnsons. High-class people. Very tush residence. You know these folks who play lawn tennis. Can’t remember if it was my first or second Christmas in Kano. I was all dressed up in my tux. Looking dapper.
My dad turned to me and said, “Junior when we get there behave yourself. If you’re offered food politely decline unless they insist. You’ve eaten enough today already.”
The decline part shocked me in my mind. I was like decline kwa? Kilode? For the Christmas party? For what na? Tueeeeh this man fail this one patapata but I would try to obey him. I nodded my head. My mum had traveled cos her mum wasn’t too fine. So I was stuck with Dad.
From the gate of the residence, you could just perceive the combos of aromas. I was detecting fried chicken and beef. Everywhere stew means everywhere stew. But this na setup walahi. If this was a temptation and I was supposed to resist and save the world, we’d all be dead. Answer.
The hosts Mr. and Mrs. Johnson welcomed us. A very beautiful couple who had relocated from the UK. They cooed over how good-looking I looked in a tux. I gave them my best smile and added that their home looked beautiful just like them. Mrs. Johnson was impressed with my responses and broke one leg of the table.
She beckoned on a girl. “Muna give this young man some snacks.” I looked at my father. He eyed me. Today we die here I said to myself. I collected the chin-chin that Muna had brought. No atom of declining. Put a couple in my mouth. Very strong but tasted good. I chewed. ‘Krom from krokoto’. The sound was loud gan. Mrs. Johnson laughed in delight. “Oh, your son is adorable.”
Did you hear it, dad? I’m adorable.
My Dad chuckled. It sounded more like he was choking. I was gleefully chewing away. I mean I couldn’t be rude to the hosts, especially beautiful Mrs. Johnson.
“Give him a bottle of Crush.” She broke the 2nd leg of the table.
I collected it sharply and gulped down in fifteen seconds. The woman squealed in delight. Even my father opened his mouth. Mr. Johnson said, “wow you’ve got quite an appetite young man. Quite voracious I must say. Well, there’s more than enough.”
See I like all these people who have traveled out. They just go there and come back reasoning like oyibo. Very different reasoning.
My father my father. See table. Anwuru (smoke) was just coming out. Chicken hot. Rice hot. Soup hot. Everything hot. Drinks lined up. Believe me, I battled not to let my father down. I tried seriously for like five minutes and decided to fall into temptation.
I was offered rice then I asked for a bit of jollof rice and white rice with pepper stew on the side with dry fish and chicken. Food paradise. All those kind of meals that can make you lose home training in public. The home training part of my brain was full of sawdust.
I scattered the beef in milliseconds. Entered the chicken with equal vigor not minding the thunder I saw written all over my father’s face. Now you must all remember that early 90s the native fowl was the chicken in vogue. Very hard bone.
I cleared the flesh of the chicken and proceeded to chew the bones. ‘Kra kra kraaaakpaaa’. The thing sounded like a knockout. Everyone stopped and turned towards the sound. Mrs. Johnson squealed again in delight. “You’re chewing for calcium. Smart boy.” I looked at her with one eye. “Ezz this woman okay? Oyibo land affects us too much. Calcium fire. NNE I was chewing the way I and my mum scatter the thing at home.”
The one that demolished the full table was when we were served pepper soup with Kayan chiki(stomach contents like intestines etc). The aroma was heavenly. I just wanted this night to never end. I ate the soup with relish and the assortment of meat in it. When I got to the shake I realized it was too strong. I couldn’t even chew. So I held one end with my teeth and I drew the other end with my hand.
Village people took over from there. The meat slipped from my fingers and returned to my face with full force like a catapult ‘pawaaaiiiii’. The soup splattered into my eye. I screamed and kicked the table. My chair lost balance. I fell backward with my plate of soup oo. Boy did I get a soup shower? I couldn’t see nada. Pepper in my eye I was screaming. Wailing I mean.
I was crying for two reasons. The first was the pepper. I mean the Johnsons were Yorubas. Legit and extreme pepper. Pepper that can change somebody’s destiny. Freaking hot in my eye. Secondly was the future ass whooping my dad was going to give me at home. I wailed.
Mrs. Johnson God bless her was wonderful. She had my face washed. Did her best with my tuxedo. Then gave me another plate of pepper soup without shake and a bottle of 7up. All the while my Dad just acted like I was not his child. Me I kukuma finished the thing despite my red-eye and burning sinuses.
Then it was time to go. I was a celebrity already. My father was just smiling his fake smile. We bid our host goodbye and the ever wonderful Mrs. Johnson gave me a peck. Chaiii I was in love. “Pay us a visit sometime soon”, Mr. Johnson said. My Dad nodded. I eyed my father. This man who I know? This was the end I was very sure.
Inside the Cab, my Dad didn’t say anything. We rode in silence. Then I heard something in my stomach. ‘Kpululululu kprrrrrriiiiii’. Ah na shit like this o. “Daddy I want to poopoo.” My Dad looked at me like ‘try am make you see’. I sucked the thing back in. It came again ‘Krum Krum kruuuuuuuu’. I held it but I couldn’t hold the fart escorting it. ‘Fiiiiiiaaaaunnn’ the thing came out like tear gas. The smell was horrendous.
“Oga makes I find somewhere stop make the boy shit”, the driver inquired. My Dad shook his head. I dropped two more nerve-wracking farts ‘siiiiiiuuuuuu’ and ‘vuuuuiiiiii’. The Cab driver had to put his head outside the window. Immediately the cab stopped in front of our house I jumped out with full speed. I barely made it into the toilet.
‘Kpuduumm, kpidimm, kpraaaaa, kprooooo, dum, dum, friiiiiiiiiiiii’. My people, I shat everything out. Rectum on fire courtesy pepper consumed. My intestine almost joined. When I came out I was sweating. As I entered our parlor I received a slap straight outta hell “toooozaaaaa.” I blacked out.
I was too young to remember what happened next. Let’s just say after kneeling down and raising my hand till dawn I received sense. I even collected like two extra reformative slaps when I fell asleep while kneeling down during NTA news that night. My father did me shege sha. I couldn’t even lift my hands the next day