When I was little. My father used to be away at his house in a different LGA from the one we stayed… with his second wife. He would visit us once in a few months with gifts and smiles. My siblings, an elder brother and an elder sister, knew better, so they were not as excited as I used to be. But me, I would rally me, myself and I round him and get what was mine. I was little, what did I know?
Our mother always carried a look around that confused me. I concluded that it was one of two things: either he did not bring her gifts too, or she just wasn’t glad he was back. I would grow to know, however, that she carried that face around because she was scared. She didn’t want him to leave again but she knew he would, so she tried not to get too used to his being around. What torture!
One day, I was seeing a Nigerian film when I saw my Dad in it. I was fascinated by the way he held that huge Igwe fan, sitting on that big throne. I remember smiling, I remember being proud too. My father smiled as he spoke to the council of elders, fanning himself too. I ran to tell my siblings I had seen daddy on TV.
“Where?” My sister had asked
“On TV now,” I replied, already vexed that she looked like I was lying to her.
So I took her to the parlour, pointing the small television on the huge room divider.
“Is it Pete Edochie that you are calling daddy?” She laughed and walked away.