I clear my throat so I can speak louder without choking on my food, “You should all know by now that a woman’s sole purpose in life is to please her man who will marry her. Even if she goes to school, breaks her head while studying to get a first class which the man probably won’t get, it does not matter. She must still be able to run home from work at five pm to pound fufu for the man to eat when he gets home from work” everyone around the square aluminium lunch table bursts out in laughter.
The ladies laugh the loudest because they know talks about women’s independence upset some of the men we work with, and the chief of them all, is still seated having his lunch. He has a big head, that Donald, it seems as though God wanted him to think harder, or be wiser. Unfortunately He hasn’t used his brain profitably – that’s my opinion, but I am biased so don’t take me too seriously.
All Donald cares about are football, accounting and showing women who the boss is. He also likes talking, often loudly, about things he has achieved, who he’s worked with or where he has been; and though he doesn’t know it, everybody in the office thinks he is a liar.
Yayra is still laughing so hard that she spills some of her sobolo juice. The red liquid of boiled hibiscus leaves mixed with spices stains her asaasa dress. She grabs tissue and dabs it off absent-mindedly and exclaims excitedly “oh oh, don’t forget the most important task of the married woman!”
The other ladies laugh louder; their laughter tells the meaning of Yayra’s statement. Donald is still bent on being quiet today. I can tell he’s upset by the way he carefully studies each grain of waakye before he collects them onto his spoon. He looks like he is using all the concentration he can muster to chew his food before he swallows
“You have to be ready at all times to open your legs so he can fuck you” Yayra continues. She never minces words. It seems to me that her 20-year stay in the United States has rubbed off all the culturally accepted mannerisms of a Ghanaian woman, and still did not quite lend her that of an American woman either. So stuck in between cultures with a funny blend of local Ewe and American accents, Yayra unconsciously tramples upon the egos of Ghanaian men everyday of her work life; especially those who work under her supervision, like Donald. Sometimes I feel sorry for them because Yayra knows and does her job so well it’s impossible to fault her professionally. All they have to go on when complaining to anyone who’d listen is her social behaviour (code for dishonouring their ego)….
In the next few days I will publish all the incomplete stories I hae in my drafts, behind notebooks, in my inbox etc. I don’t remember where I was going with some of them, others I forgot I started. Perhaps your comments will give me fresh angles and bring some of them back to life.
All suggestions are welcome.