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Thursday, June 19, 2014

A walk down memory lane

I'm becoming quite regular here...#shinesteeth. But I won't praise myself so much because I am not even predictable anymore. Something tells me deep down that after my self-praise, I will just revert to my old ways... #sigh. May God deliver me from myself.  Did I hear an Amen?

How are you doing? Chopping life with double hands I presume? Chop am well. That's the way forward. But no mago-mago sha. God hates false things!

Yesterday,  'Toro and myself were on our way to work and somehow the convo shifted to how our parents brought us up. We compared our growing up days to the way kids these days are brought up. What a world of difference!!!!
An example- I remember clearly one day when a family friend came visiting. For some reason I can't remember, I didn't go to school. Herself and my mum had a good visit and as she prepared to go, she dipped her hand into her purse and came up with some money for me to use to "buy biscuits" for myself. Of course, I looked to my mom for permission. 
Now for those of you who don't understand what this means, this is for you.-Permission had to be obtained from one's parents or guardian before any activity or action is taken, especially when it involves a third party. Otherwise you as the "innocent child" will be responsible for whatever comes your way- usually in the form of: a beating; pulling or boxing of the ears; hard knocks or harsh comments (this usually made you wish for a beating). Now note that permission to proceed with a particular action was never verbally given. It was an unwritten rule. This permission was usually given by the subtlest movement of the eye. So subtle was it that no facial muscle moved, and if the child in question wasn't fast enough, he or she would miss it completely.
So I looked up to my mum for permission and I instantly knew taking the money was a bad idea. So I politely declined and thanked the kind aunty. She insisted and I said no again. Shebi any other person would have withdrawn the offer? This alakoba woman was still giving me the money. At that point, my mom was like "don't you want to take it?" I looked up in surprise because I knew without  a shadow of doubt that I didn't miss her initial eye signal. My mom's eyes said no, but her mouth kept saying take it. Ah, my brothers and sisters,  that day I knew I was in trouble. How was my less than 10 year old brain supposed to know right from wrong at that point?  I kept saying "no thank you" and was wondering what in God's name I was doing in the parlor when this woman decided to go and getting irritated that she was insisting I take the money. Abeg, na by force? I said I don't want and you are still insisting. Hian!

-If jazz were popular in those days we would have concluded that she wanted to use me for rituals or for what ever dark purposes she had in mind. But as our minds were still clean then, we just knew that she probably just wanted to be nice. -

Finally, when she got tired of our cat and mouse game, she forced the money into my hands and turned to go. Even then, I knew it was final, there was no returning it. I closed my hands tight over the money, thanked her and prayed that it wont make me cry (remember the options above?). I sat and waited for my mum to return from seeing her off. As soon as the door opened I ran to her with my outstretched hand and showed her the money her friend had just given me (like she wasn't there when it went down). She just smiled and said something like "you are smart" but I honestly can't remember.  What amazed me was that she just walked into the kitchen and that was the end of the whole thing. 

Fast forward to children of today who don't even know what the "eye signal" is. I recently heard of a "smart Alec" whose mom was giving him the eye so as not to do something. The boy didn't understand  and since we encourage our children to speak up these days, she allowed her boy come up to her and embarrass the living day light out of her by asking "mommy, what is wrong with your eye? Why are you doing it like that?' The mother just kept quiet. Hahaha. The kids that were raised in my time definitely wouldn't have tried that.

What do you remember about "discipline" growing up? Please share your experience!

P.S. I heard about Kefee's demise and it made me so sad. Such talent...and at her youth too. May her soul rest in peace. May her loved ones also be comforted in Jesus name. Amen.


  1. Haaaa! This piece made me laugh so much, I'm still smiling from the memory it brought back.

    My mother always told us to be satisfied with whatever she gave us and she had an interesting way of explaining it.

    There was this day I complained that the piece of meat in my food was too small, she asked me to bring it so she could see how small it was and maybe give me a bigger piece. When I gave it to her, she cut the meat into 2 equal pieces and give me only one of the pieces back while she threw the other half into her mouth while I watched in shock! You can only imagine the tears that followed.

    Anyways, it was lesson learnt.

    1. OMG!!!! Are you serious???? That's some lesson mehn! I bet you will never forget that one in a hurry. Those tears.....chai! I feel you babe.

      I'm glad our folks had time to teach us the best lessons even though growing up they were so wicked. But now, I look back and I'm extremely grateful.