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Of Voices And Vermin

The day has arrived!!! After soooo long, your MCM is back with the series thing. It shall be an interesting one. Captivating, riveting, all the brofo you can think of that applies to this.

Shout out to all my Naija people, by the way. Henson, Chiderah, Angel, Sylvia, Helen… God bless your country!! I wanted to raise the jollof issue, but never mind. Hehe… it’s your day.

Okayyyy, time to dig in!!!

“So the people were insulting him after he jumped the red light?” I asked.

“Yes oo! Especially the guys at the back. It was so heated, eh! Never experienced anything like it before. Especially when the mate was cutting in and telling people to stop talking plenty. Oh, the insults they rained on him… I’m sure if a policeman had caught him mpo, he’ll prefer it.”

I grinned, shaking my head as I looked at Nii Ajei in the passenger seat, who had a slightly smaller smirk on his face. The phone was connected to the car’s Bluetooth, so of course it was on speaker. I whispered to him, “When dadabees experience the normal trotro life.”

He covered his mouth as he burst into laughter.

Oh, sorry. Man hasn’t introduced himself yet. My name is Sidney Allotey. And Nii Ajei is my younger brother. We’re separated by 3 years, but the bond we share? Tight. Extremely tight. So tight that he’s like the unofficial fifth member of my clique from university. But you’ll find out about that later.

So, we were on our way back from Cape Coast. My boss just had to throw a spanner in the works for Saturday when he gave me this assignment on Friday evening to go meet one of our major clients. I had plans of spending it with Nii, Bambi and Jerome! Arrgh! Well, Nii had nothing to do, so he was happy to tag along.

By the way, Bambi is my fiancé. And Jerome is her younger brother. He’s the one I was talking to. The boy is a typical dadaba; always been moved around by his parent’s drivers. It was somewhere last year when they decided he should be moving around by himself. He’s fourteen years old, by the way. And as you can tell by the conversation we were having, the boy seems quite enchanted by the experiences he’s having. He already told me about the time this huge lady took the seat next to the mate, and the mate complained about her taking up too much space, and the third time, the lady didn’t take kindly to his plenty talk, and blasted the daylight out of him.

According to him, she’s from my tribe. So… if you know, you know. Haha! 😆😆 I love my people.

Anyways, he continued rattling off all the experiences he had had the past week, which took another five minutes and fifty-two seconds. He clearly is yet to get used to the shortcuts and the annoying driving skills of these trotro drivers. But of course, small boys are young. He’ll get used to it.

He handed the phone to his sister.

“Bra Jerome is done with this week’s edition of Trotro Diaries, eh?” Bambi laughed.

“Yep! All juicy details downloaded into my ears,” I responded.

Sigh, Bambi Darkwah. 😘😘😘 The cutest girl I’ve ever set my eyes upon. Chanced upon her at a chibom joint not too far from her hostel, got smitten hard, chased her relentlessly, wrestled past all the “Gimme some time”, “I need to think about it” and “I’m not sure what I want” and won her heart. Even then, it was sweet all right, but a lot of stuff threatened to keep us away from each other. I don’t need to bore you with all the details of that. What matters for the meantime is that I finally get to put a ring on it in a few months time!! Sigh, Bambi. My caramel blessing!

“Hahaha! He’s getting the experience. I’ve told him there’s more in store kraaa. Like when he’ll one day have some kokonsa passenger watching his phone as he’s chatting on Whatsapp…”

“Herh, that thing is so annoying!” Nii Ajei blurted out. “Then they’ll be reading your conversation. Like, warris dat?”

“Shocks me kraa,” I added. “That thing is witchcraft pɛɛɛ!”

“Tell me about it. There was one time I was chatting with Mabel, and this guy sitting next to me suddenly started leaning in my direction…”

I noticed Nii Ajei’s grimace as Bambi started her own story. He mouthed, “We’re missing the game on Citi!”

Hand on my forehead, I mouthed back, “I knowwwwww!!!”

*****************

Two hours later, we had safely arrived at our Regimanuel Gray estate home, after all that intense traffic. Ugh! Thank God for automatic cars, honestly. I like the good old manual and all, but let’s be serious. Half-clutch in that insane pile-up? Chale, chale, stop. I do enough exercise.

So we were ready to get in and take out the stuff and relax. Until…

“Oh crap! You didn’t remind me to get the Ideal milk?” I groaned out loud, just as I stopped.

Nii placed his right hand over his face. “Arrrrrrrgghhhh! Escaped my mind from the moment that Mr. Music Man hour began, honestly.”

I gave him a side eye. “Blame it on Kojo Antwi, abi?”

He gave me a silly grin in return. “Our old folks taught us well.”

I shook my head. Yep, all those family journeys in the past, with Kojo Antwi on heavy rotation, has definitely made a mark on us. “You diɛɛ, no worries. Let me go to the supermarket down the road. You can take the Fante kenkey inside and check if the Premier League highlights is on, na the way these commentators were screaming over that Dele Alli goal diɛɛ, man has to see it.”

“Mm-hmm,” Nii Ajei said as he reached over to the back to take the two bags of Fante kenkey.

Yamoransa Fante kenkey!! ❤❤ That junction is a legendary one. Dotted with all those Fante kenkey sellers, ever ready to rush upon any car that stops so they can make some sales. Anyone who’s schooled in the Central Region knows that place too well. The way three of them rushed to the car when we stopped. The plenty “ebei, bra” and things. If we didn’t exercise a good level of firmness and gentleness, we’d probably have the back seat filled up with those blue rubber bags filled with the Fante kenkey. No kidding. Those ladies can give pressure!!

“Chale, then blend about three of them in the meantime, so when I come, we just add the milk and have our mashke for the evening,” I told him.

“Okay, no problem,” he responded.

He stepped out of the car and entered through the gate as I turned the car to move to the supermarket.

**********************

As I took my change from the shop attendant, my phone started to ring. I looked at the caller ID.

It was Kwabena.

So Kwabena is my unofficial ‘brother’. My roommate from university. He’s the first… no, wait. Second member of the university clique I mentioned. I’m the first one, after all. And among the four (five-ish) of us, he is the loudest and most unpredictable. If I were to be given 1 cedi for every single time that guy said stuff that left my mouth hanging… chale, I’d build a sensational mansion for myself.

I’ll give one example. Back in school, I was a huge Grey’s Anatomy fan. He wasn’t. One day, I’m watching my thing, and this boy passes by my laptop, sees Cristina Yang and says, “Ah, wey lady too this, wey ihn face check like confused duck?”

S-M-H. 🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂🤦🏾‍♂

To this day, I still can’t understand how that nonsensical statement entered his brain. Like, how????

Ah well, I thank God for Ewurabena. His wife. She knows how to somehow neutralize that foolishness in him. They’ve been together for so long (although there was a break-up in there at some point), and they complement each other so well (if only you could see their pictures! Goodness, they’ll make you melt, I promise!) even though they’re so different (Ewurabena is so quiet and gentle, and Kwabena… well, I already mentioned it).

He’s a handful, alright, but I wouldn’t exchange him for any other ‘well-behaved’ guy. He’s a wonderful friend. And a very loyal one, too.

“Chale, wassup?” I asked.

“I dey oo, Sid. You return from Cape?”

“Yeah, I dey Accra now. We return not too long ago. I just go buy some Ideal milk for the supermarket. Nii dey house.”

“Oh, cool. So chale, he be OK now?”

I hesitated, not too sure what answer to give. “Chaleeee, ibi difficult to tell. He dey act happy and all, but I no know whether ibi mask or he’s really getting over it.”

“Hmmm… dicey issue… Ewurabena won talk plus you.”

“Sure, sure.”

As I sat in the car, I held on, listening to the couple as Kwabena gave the phone and, from the sounds of it, took Jemima from her.

Yeah, I’m sure you can tell. Jemima is their daughter. Their one year old daughter. It still amuses me sometimes to know this cannonball friend of mine is a husband and a father. He’s a great one, though.

“Ei, Daddy Kwabena on duty!” I said teasingly.

Ewurabena’s gentle laughter was the next thing I heard. “Most amazing daddy in the world. Jemmy couldn’t have had a better man to call Daddy. How are you, by the way?”

Vintage Mrs. Afriyie. The way this girl loves him so deeply eh, it’s not a joking distin. Always got something sweet to say about her king.

“I’m good oo. Just still unsure what to do about Nii. The last time we spoke about it, he fiercely insisted he was fine. Since then, I’m just treating him normally. But the sagging shoulders and the quiet periods still persist.”

“Hmmmm. I think we should give him a bit of time. There’s a lot I’d want to ask, but I’m thinking it’ll be better if we meet you and get more info. So do we meet after church tomorrow?”

“As long as Kwabena is staying home, taking care of Jemmy. I’m fine.”

She laughed. “Don’t do that to him.”

“Tomorrow is fine by me.”

“Great,” she responded. “Have a good night, then, and send my regards to Nii.”

“Yes, Mrs. Afriyie. Good night to you too, and your husband and daughter.”

I hung up, started the engine and moved back home.

Sigh. Nii Ajei Allotey. My younger brother.

He means a lot to me.

That’s why I’m so worried about him.

 

Hmmm… 🤔🤔🧐🧐 I wonder what it could be that has Sidney worried for his brother. He seemed pretty fine throughout this episode to me. Well, things aren’t always as they seem, so let’s see what comes on Friday!!

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