Chronicles of a 93 Giant

CHRONICLES OF A 93 GIANT

On a recent visit to my Alma mater I decided to do something different apart from what everybody did when they visited their high schools that had shaped who they are in their formative years. I decided to not only visit the school premises but also the surrounding area where we usually hanged out when we were off the school premises.

Being on a hill GSTS had the pride of place of residing on the apex of the hill surrounded by valleys all over and a spectacular view of the surrounding town, a green valley and the Takoradi harbor.  What a view!

Usually students went “off the wall” behind one of the dormitories to get into town. The first point of call was the Type C flats originally built for mine workers in Takoradi but soon became a hangout for hustlers in the town. There are several shops an various hangouts for anything within that block of low cost housing flats. Men could be seen playing draughts or cards and women going about cooking or taking care of children in the community. There was also various quarters for prostitutes who could be seen going about plaiting their hair and going about their daily activities waiting for nightfall.

Just past the flats is the Zenith hotel which area was the centre of activity. Streetlights ensured that the place was always lighted like day time even at night.  Several activities went on in the area and people hang out there for various reasons. it also happened to be the red light district and the hotel served both short time and long term guests. Food vendors display foods of all kinds, shops and supermarket of all kinds were also operating in the area. There is a video centre showing the latest movies from across the globe especially Hollywood and with special days where porn was exclusive and these were the days when Exile was full to capacity.

When one didn’t want to stay in the Zenith-Exile area one could take a walk further to the Princess Cinema area which was equally bustling with activity even more that it was a big screen cinema location and a lorry station that never sleeps. There is also a video centre there as well and the activity means there are shops, pubs, supermarket and food vendors serving the needs of night crawlers.
Against this background I stopped over during my walk through Type C to get a refreshing soda and whilst waiting for my order I thought I saw a young man who looked like one of my classmates and I turn round and see another that looks like another mate of mine.  Knowing how Pobee and Shadada loved coming to Type C my hackles were rising with this discovery. As I stood there one old man called a lad Felix and asked him how work was the previous day and when this lad turned to answer to the old man I could swear he had the Okoto’s cheek. This was the family heirloom but wait, the young man calls a very nice young girl to come sign some documents and it was obvious they were twins. I asked the lady shop owner if  they were twins and she confirmed so and when I enquired about their mother was told she’d gone to work in the market. The realization hit me like a pile of bricks. My mate Felix has twins at Type C. A boy and a girl, Oko and Akweley Okoto. Wow!

With all this activity going on around me I was glad that back in my days  in school I was already walking with Christ with my closest friend who always wears a hat to cover his head trying to contain all the thoughts in one place. I smiled to myself at the thought. Who was I deceiving but myself. I had to look around to check if anybody could hear my absurd thoughts.

But thinking of walking, armed with this realization I was going to walk through these hangouts with an endurance gait trying to recognize the faces of my mates in school who I know frequented these hangouts. I had turned myself into a face recognition device trying to search and match the database of the 93 year group giants who walked this route some two decades ago.

As I stood there with my thoughts and observing the goings and comings in the community, a taxi dropped two young men in front of a shop down the road from where I was and when they were entering the house the saleswoman muttered loudly “these boys are back” which piqued my curiosity. So I went further to ask her what was the story with the boys and if they were trouble. The young men looked the part of the youth Yankee wannabes in their baggy trousers with looney tunes boxer shorts showing, wearing oversized cardigans in the sweltering heat and having studs in their ears.  I had a goofy look on my face when the recognition software in my mind clicked in and the lady noticing it asked me he I knew them or had heard of them. That is Ebow Akita and his friend who just got out of the taxi.

Those boys play the loudest music and have the most rave parties in the area. They will dance their way through anything and there is no music video in town you won’t find them not in. It was the name of the second guy that made me drop my almost empty coke bottle. Ziggy Gyan!

“Eiii abrantie, why?” The lady exploded. Sensing that there might be a juicy story she walked over and stood directly in front of me, her ample bosom showing with a thin film of sweat on her globules and beaded in the cleavage then with the nicest smile she could mutter she asked softly
“ekɔ sec tech aa” (did you attend sec tech) to which I replied in the affirmative and said Yes.  It was then she asked loudly if per any chance I knew a Kofi Kudu. My mistake was to say I did indeed and then she started raining insults on me.  Some of the names she called me are not worth of reprinting but I just stood there dumfounded. This young woman was obviously coming from a place of pain caused by a sec tech giant.

Wow what a day it was turning out to be. I quickly paid her for the soda and started to walk quickly away before people started staring at this irate woman raining insults on me as the insults followed me away. It was later when I called another friend of mine who perfectly described the woman and unfortunately had been meted out the same treatment by this self same woman who explained that it was a dude named Oppong who always practiced coitus interruptus who this woman had had a relationship with and whilst some colleagues had had children for giants, she had never even been satisfied sexually. She was also angry because she had found out there were three Oppong brothers and since it was always night she couldn’t make out which brother it was.

Quickly going past Zenith and Exile I realized that the area hadn’t changed too much and the lorry station now had been paved and the gutters made bigger. Furthermore some of the shops have been replaced by ultra modern buildings mostly housing financial institutions. 

What a nostalgic moment I was having just walking through these very paths me and my mates had trudged on over two decades ago. I couldn’t believe some of us will never walk these paths again due to being deceased, God rest their humble souls. I didn’t let that sad moment get to me but I smiled and said a prayer of Thanksgiving to God for the blessing of life.

Walking round the market circle could be very tiring. I remember when we used to say it was the biggest roundabout market in West Africa when we didn’t even know any others.  That phrase always reminded me of the proverb “you say your farm has the biggest tubers of yam when you haven’t been to another person’s farm”.  Reminded me also of those crazy moments when one dorm mate Kofi Frimpong suggested when we didn’t have food and were hungry on campus that we all wear overalls with nothing under and then storm the market and flash the food sellers and when they run away we collected what food items we wanted. He suggested that the worse they can do is to think we were mad men. There was a lesson in that being that it was not what was perceived about you but then being focused got you your hearts desire.

With these pleasant thoughts I stopped over at a coconut seller who looked more like a consultant in his business suit than a peddler. What actually drew me to that particular seller wasn’t only his suit but how well built and intelligent he looked. He looked like somebody who was born to be a leader and this is a rare genetic trait. Dude asked me if it was my first time in town and I said oh No! I’d attended school here and this was my memory walk. He was so excited hearing I was a giant and exclaimed in excitement he said “oh bleda, skul a na me pɛ dɛ me kɔ n’su mi papa, oh mi papa (That’s a school I wanted to attend but blame my father).

He said his mother said his father was a doctor in the United States who had been a school prefect at the school and it would’ve been easy for him to get admission because being such a product he would have had some sway. His mother only said his father was a funky dude named Zaroo and even though he had never met him he was sure he was a true son of his father hence we only wore business suits to sell his coconuts. To him he was an entrepreneur.

Abeiku, for that was his name, hoped to expand his business and go into other ventures such as selling provisions especially Nestle products and become an agent for them.  Wow! The irony was not lost on me.  I just ate my coconut in silence, wished him well thanked me and I walked on.

I remembered that the irate shop owner had directed me to one chop bar and I could feel my tummy giving me warning signals.  All that walk was taking a toll on me and I needed to refuel to maintain my sanity. The shop lady had me directions to “Awurade bɛ kyerɛ” chop bar and there was a hairdressing salon attached to it and I noticed a chubby pretty girl working there. Her movements and dexterity with her fingers impressed me and I was curious to know her parents. She said he mother was a Kenkey seller and her dad had been a pianist at  “sec tech church” as she put it. When I asked how old she was and if her dad still worked at sectech I almost spit my “pusna” (octopus) with the soup in my mouth all over her. I shouted Joe and she was confused. She said but she never mentioned her dad’s name.  I told her I was sorry and lied to her saying I had said “chow” which was ewe meaning what and we both laughed.

I had lost my appetite but Thank God I had eaten most of the food.  Today I had met too many people who looked like progeny of people I had been in class with over two decades ago and that was scary. I knew I could’ve headed back to the ample bosom shop owner for more information but I was scared she would turn me away. For a moment I thought to myself what if I offered her money for the info would she be offended? Well it was worth a try. 

First I placed an international call to London to tell Lord Bujay of my discovery and he advised that I leave it alone. He confirmed that on his last visit he saw two young boys who looked like him and readily came to walk with him and he gave them some money and walked quickly away before anybody could see any resemblance like he did. 

Wow! These are the deeds of my mates and to think that we were all in school primarily to study. Well,  they say when you don’t want anybody to see your misdeeds you put the spotlight on others. This is my story as I walked through the very streets me and my school mates had walked twenty some years ago as students of Mother Tesco.

Let me leave it alone before gift some more revelations that will knock me over moreover I was tired.

Disclaimer: 

Inasmuch as the names of places and people in this piece are true the story is purely fiction and not intended to malign any of the men in the story who are all happily married now and doing very well in their various spheres of endeavor. I’m proud to know you guys – Class of 93 Giants.

This is dedicated to you guys.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: