It’s Thursay, only days to go until Christmas finally comes upon us, time to reflect and see pray that the new year is better than the last. I’ve been up since 5.30, I seem to get up earlier and earlier maybe because I have the option to go back to sleep at anytime, well I say that but not always possible with smother and mini smother (that’s little sister to you and me). Yesterday I fell into a deep slumber around 2, I was suddenly pulled out of it to go take smother to the salon. Yes I was a bit grumpy when I woke up, when I’m awoken suddenly like that with total disregard to the fact that I was sleeping, it happens. However they didn’t see it that way, I’m supposed to just jump to attention whenever they call, but anyways.
I think my body has finally acclimatised to this here country. Woke up this morning to a dodgy belly, having eaten french food last night, the body rejected it this morning, but it was so worth it.
As I said yesterday, we were off to a French restaurant for a collegue’s leaving dinner. Le Tandem in cantoments. It is just past burma camp in a hideout in one of the side roads. Owned by a French man, you have the option of a francophone waiter or a Ghanaian waiter. The menu is written on a whiteboard, French cuisine but it is written in English for the French languagically challenged. I took mini smother with me as I had not really spent time with her, then I remembered why I don’t spend time with her (more on that lately).
We were greeted by a waiter who bought us cheese on french toasted bread, followed by mini baguettes, which were lovely and warm. I ordered the smoked salmon, most of the Ghanaians among us ordered the gizzard as that is what they are used to. The starter arrived. My colleague sitting next to me looked down to see about three bits of gizzard surrounded by lots of leaves. His face was a picture, it was priceless when he put the food to his mouth. The leaves were those bitter tasting leaves mash (got the spelling wrong but sure you know what I mean). He took one bite and squinted. I couldn’t bear to see him struggle any longer and put some smoked salmon his way. He wasn’t impressed with the raw fish either (can’t see us going for sushi anytime soon then). The other Ghanaians who took the gizzard as a starter went through a similar experience and ended up requesting for more bread.
The main meal came. I requested duck fillet. It has been a long time since I have eaten duck. I remember when I was living in Camberwell, me and my best friend P would do a monthly trip to Borough Market, there I would treat myself to sea bass and duck fillets, even if I only bought two items that day, it would be that. I’d season the duck with mirin, teryiaki, a bit of olive oil and season to taste, then on the griddle 5 mins each side and eat with new potatoes and a salad. I miss those days. But I digress.
I asked for the duck well done, it came in medium rare, I could live with that but its a good job I didn’t ask for it to be medium rare, liable to have got an uncooked duck. The duck came in at 50GHS, if I had been paying I would have probably ordered the shrimp but as I was not the one paying, hell I didn’t hesitate when the waiter took my order. It came with vegetables and garlic mashed potatoes. With all the meals it also came with rice on the side, but after the starter and the bread I was already full, the food tasted good but it was a struggle to eat it being so full. My neighbour ordered lamb shoulder. He is a rice and goat meat kind of man and felt this would be the closest to goat he could order. Unfortunately for him, the meat had been overpowered by seasoning I’m sure they seasoned it with a lot of tarragon (I don’t like that herb). He took one bite out of it and there came the same face that I had seen when he tasted the starter. I gave him some of my duck, he liked it. I was surprised as when I ordered it he was asking me if I was really going to order duck, like quack, quack duck he asked. Yes I said. Hmmm he replied. Now here was my guy wishing he had ordered it.
I really was full by the time the main came, and so it was easy to split my meal with him, and from the way he ate it, I think I may have saved his life.
We ate and the desert menu came. Greedy guts here ordered the chocolate mouse, my colleague ordered the fruit salad. You can’t go wrong with those choices. After the meal, we presented my Senegalese friend with some presents. 3 pieces of woodin fabrics and a picture frame. She is very French vogue, lovely slim, tall, the fabrics will look lovely against her beautiful dark skin. I’m really going to miss her.
We ate, we laughed, we drank and now it was time to go home. It would have been a lovely evening except this is where it gets dark.
I drop the guys on mission back at the guest house. Mini smother was sitting in the back seat. My Nigerian friend was sitting in the front seat, he gets down and says she should sit in the front, he asked her twice but she made out that she didn’t hear him. So when they got out I ask her to sit in front. She point blank refused. I’m thinking its because I asked her earlier why she was stepping on the imaginary brake. It was meant as a joke but as I said we are complete opposites so she didn’t get it and in fact got quite annoyed.
We went to pick up smother who was at my aunts house. Smother doesn’t call me now, everything she wants goes through mini smother. We get to the house and I ask mini smother to call and tell her to call and tell her to come out. The reason I say to call is because otherwise it would be another hour before they both come out of the house with all the how was your day and the excessive small talk. Mini smother insisted she wanted to go inside, “why won’t you just let me go inside, you’re treating me like a kid and quite frankly its getting annoying”. “Why can’t you just do what I say”. She then goes into one, I hate you, I can’t believe you are my sister. This is the worst holiday I have ever had. I am never coming to visit you again. That’s when I got mad. We have this argument all the time. She doesn’t understand how condescending and patronizing she sounds when she sounds. How difficult it is to plan something for her when her response is “I don’t mind”, and that unlike her and her mother I don’t just say whatever I feel like without regard for how the other person feels but when I am pissed off it is clearly visible, but it is better to make me out to be the bad person as she has smother to back her up. She asked my boss why he didn’t give me leave last week and he said he has been begging me to take leave. This is the reason why. She is self-righteous and sees everything in black and white. For example, God daddy, for whatever reason his marriage has broken down and he has come to Ghana and has moved on with someone else. He has been totally honest about things and says he just wants to be happy in his twilight years. I think it is sad that after nearly 40 years it has come to this but I was not there in the marriage, I don’t want to get involved in it, but I love him so I respect what choices he’s made. All I can do is pray that whenever I find my soul mate it works out. I know what it is like to be in a relationship when the love has gone, but fortunately for me there were no kids involved, but even at that I left a lot later than I did out of some false sense of obligation. My sister says, if he tries to introduce her to this new woman she will point blank refuse to acknowledge the woman, as far as she is concerned the man is married and she doesn’t want to know. All I know is that three years ago when I met him in Ghana, he was overweight, tired, and unhappy. Today he’s a lot happier and a lot healthier. We all want our parents to stay together for ever but really is it worth being in a relationship which you resent just for the sakes of the children?
She’s a big gossip too. She and smother sit down and gossip about who leads a good and bad life, they also talk about what my dad does and doesn’t do. My dad aint no saint, he isn’t always the best dad in the world, but he’s the one we have, and they need to sort out their own issues. My biggest regret was listening to my mum going on about my dad’s alleged affair. I could have used that time to resolve or release myself from my own pitiful relationship but oh well that’s in the past.
While I was trying to talk she was talking over me. I hate when people talk over me and don’t listen to what I am saying, I am liable to get angry and you really wouldn’t like me when I’m angry. So I just shut up and said “well done” and left it at that.
All this going on and I try to keep quiet as I know my mouth will run away from me, but I am used to having the tag as the bad one so I wear it with pride. Now I am not perfect, I am opinionated, I don’t like certain things which people think are no big deal and I wear my heart on my sleeve, but I am always conscious of peoples feelings and if I seem to be in a mood its because rather than erupt I hold back. I also take time to assess my life, if I’m in the wrong, I may not admit it out loud, but I will make visible changes to make you know that I have heard. She doesn’t do that because she has been tagged as the perfect daughter so she assumes that everything she does is right.
But today is another day. I am at my spot as usual drinking my lucozade. My friend paa kojo just stopped by he was washing his car. He got himself a water and off he went without paying. Oh well it was only 10 pesewas and the owner said I shouldn’t worry about it, so it is all good.
I’m stepping down from my pedistal now, going to take my car for some fuel and then off home. My security guard told me he’s off for the christmas to his hometown. I think he was expecting cash but he got Nestle products instead. Times are hard and the money I took out needs to last me the break as I still haven’t gone to collect my card yet. Must do that next week before it gets destroyed.
Keep writing, you have a wonderful blog. We can make a film one day.