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'My mother-in-law's daughter'

Mawuli Zogbenu 1212.jpeg Mawuli Zogbenu is the author

Fri, 5 May 2023 Source: Mawuli Zogbenu

Driving a car at top speed can be fun and deadly. Last Saturday I was driving at 160km/h and suddenly I heard a voice from the skies that said to me: “Mawuli, my ‘daughter, , you want to come home? Then continuue”. It was then I realized my st**idity. Since then, I have been driving at a maximum speed of 110km/h.

There are people who depend on us for their livelihoods and should anything happen to us by way of accident, we have worried them. Who was I driving to impress? The thing is a machine; when you press it will go. Kill your speed or it will do the needful.

The whatsapp messages I find difficult to respond to are those which are like these ones: ‘The family of Mr So so and so wish to express their gratitude for your time, presence and presents during the funeral of our dear Brother Bernard. God bless you’. Number 2: ‘The families of Mr and Mrs Abenkwan wish to thank you profusely for witnessing the solemnization of holy matrimony between our son and daughter. Mr Kofi and Mrs Ama Kofi. God bless you for your presence, presents and prayers’.

Because I knew I wasn’t present and didn’t even inform my invitors about my absence, some guilt often builds up in me. You know you did not attend the event. Are you going to say: “you are welcome’? To where? Hehehehe!

Let’s learn to be straight forward with our loved ones, even those who hate us or those we hate. There is pressure everywhere, we know. If you are certain you would not be able to attend, just tell the one who invited you: ‘I am sorry I would not be able to attend due to an equally pressing development. Your friend may not be happy but you would not keep him or her waiting to see you at the wedding or funeral and then you fail to show up. Ah!

Don’t mar friendships with things of this nature. You cannot attend the funeral, finish, matter close. Don’t say, I will definitely be there and then when the time comes, no show. Value relationships and you would go far, Akwetey Polis. You hear?

The only parties I don’t and wont attend are generally birthday parties. I don’t know why I am not crazy about birthdays o, not even my own. Interestingly, there are people who can literally fight you for not wishing them ‘happy birthday, my guy. have a blast’.

Where ‘blast’ means? Often when I feel forced to do something that is not from the botoks of my heart, sorry o, I mean bottom of my heart, I don’t feel cool about it. I think I just remembered why I don’t like birthdays.

When it was my birthday those days, that is when my Dad would give me a house chore that I would be unable to finish and then the canes would descend on me kpiaaa…kpiaaa…kpiaaa! Don’t mind am la. It was all a takashi strategy he used so that I would not expect anything as birthday gift from him.

You see what can happen when you visit your mother-in-law in the village? You would have noticed that the food is often nicer and more organic than these Accra Accra ones especially if the fufu soup contains snails and akranti3. Ehern talk of snails, I am still wondering how come snail meat has become more expensive than grass-cutter meat and goat meat.

Indeed, if there is any area of farming I wish to consider going into, it will be snail farming. All one needs are filthy garbage which we rather dump on our roads to choke our gutters. As for us di3333…oooohhhh d3bida!

Recently I was in Poliskrom in the Ashanti Region to visit my mother-in-law with my wife. She had prepared fufu and some sumptuous soup bi erh. They didn’t have light because their light bulbs were burnt.

My wife and I were in some corner eating in the dark and the way the food was nice er, I would have wished for more but I was being a krachie (gentleman). And by some divine grace, this woman shouted from a distance: ‘Asew, there is more food here o, I am bringing you some’. I hope you were not expecting me to say: ‘okay, Asew, bring it’ or? If you no dey shy anything at all, not to ‘methane gas’ in the presence of your in-law o. You may be lucky and get away with it if your in-law is a mother-in-law. But woe unto you if you should do that in the presence of your father-in-law who is a retired soldier!

So when the woman kept calling me for more food, I kept responding though reluctantly: ‘oh, Asew papapaaa; what we have here is even too much. I am even satisfied already’. It’s a lie o. At the same time, I kept pushing my wife to go for more because the place was dark and mum-in-law could not see me lobbying for more fufui through her daughter.

My wife is smart o. Though I declined the food ‘reluctantly’ but on the blind side of the old lady pushing my wife to go for it, she obliged and went for the food and I could hear her telling her mum ‘she is not satisfied but need some more for herself’ and then she brought it to me.

That girl knows my problem and how to solve it o. I call her ‘girl’ bcos the moment I begin to call her ‘woman’, it connotes something similar to the size of my mother-in-law. Of course we treat our girls better than we treat our eyi so, she is my ‘girlfriend’ even after marriage. The moment I begin to call her ‘wife’…hmmm . ‘When a green plantain becomes ripe, its name changes’ no be so? To be frank, it is a great luck to have a woman who would protect your interest o; not the one that could expose you by saying ‘my husband is not satisfied and so he is asking for more fufui and akranti3 head.

The only things I don’t like about my wife are some things be that annoy me small small. This my mother-inlaw’s daughter asked me to buy a 4-burner gas cooker. I did about 9 years ago. She is still cooking with charcoal all because of that her mundane outdated belief that food prepared with kropot especially Ghana rice tastes nicer than with gas cooker.

I told you last week o, that the only way Ghana’s local rice sector could beat Vietnamese rice is to say they contain ‘manpower’ things for bedmatics. Nothing moves us to consume anything better than adding this bit even if it is just an embellishment. This my mother-in-law’s daughter requested a washing machine which I bought 8 years ago. It is still in the park because she prefers washing clothes with her hands. What at all do some of our wives want kraaaa han? Not all o; I say ‘some’ including mine.

Wedding wedding wedding and then…problems nkoaaa we invite to ourselves. The worst part is those who borrow money to do wedding and before they even finish repaying the loan, they are in court saying ‘Papa Lawyer, even though I said ‘I do’ some months ago, I have now changed my mind to ‘I don’t’.

My mother was married to my father with only a bottle of schnapps and akpeteshie quarter and some kola nuts and they had a very wonderful marriage in spite of the occasional normal fights. One of the causes of the fights I later got to know was that my father was ‘ronning’ things behind the scenes.

My senior brother and I used to get angry at him for such ‘ungodly’ behavior until I recently got to understand him when I grew up too and got married. ‘Who no grow go grow’ was a popular phrase of my late Dad anytime my senior brother and I got upset with him for ronning things but now me too ‘I grow’!

Nowadays when some people go to church they would be on their phones saaa and not listen to the word of God. Just like myself, they only become alert when the pastor begins to talk about fornication; everyone becomes awake and alert.

God is such a merciful God.

Have a great weekend and remember to insure your house against fire; you can never tell.

Columnist: Mawuli Zogbenu