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Why I miss those nights in the village

Yes, I know, December is still far away, and with the ongoing heatwave in Europe, there is hardly anything more absurd than thinking about Christmas. But the other day, I came across an old video and realized just how much I am missing Isuofia.

It is a bit dark and fuzzy, but it brought back all the beautiful memories of December in the village. If not for Nnanyereugo (our last born) and the ongoing insecurity in Anambra state, we would have booked our tickets for Christmas a long time ago. At least the prospect of traveling by the end of the year would have helped me through the year. But without it, I am left with the memories in my heart and decided to write a little poem about those nights I cherish.

Nights in December

The shallow light from the distant house can barely put a face on the voices.

There are many, high and low, mixing up in swirling noises.

«Nulu onu anyi» playing from behind the door

convincing everyone to stay a little more.

It is the time of the year when no drop of rain touches the ground

And “Nno” is heard all over the village, in every compound

Ndi Igbo from all over the world have come back home

To celebrate with their family, nobody alone

The plastic chairs are lined up in a circle, right under the stars

Surrounded by the gate and the visitors’ parked cars

A jug of nkwu enu, just enough to fill each cup

And anytime the throats run dry, «bia, onye n’ebea» has to go and fill it up.

The open gate let's you catch a glimpse of the road

where the masquerades come home from the market, a view to behold

More and more guests are taking a seat

Evening visits are common where music is played with something to eat

People laugh, argue, listen or snooze,

Different drinks are available, you get to choose.

A bottle of hot drink is opened, and we are having a blast

Not forgetting a drop on the floor for those who have passed

Arguments about nothing can take up the night

And sometimes, but rarely, last till daylight

These are the nights I love to remember

Those nights in the village, those nights in December

Last but not least

I decided always to end my blog posts with an Igbo proverb or quote and a song (not necessarily Igbo) that speaks to my heart. Feel free to share your favorite proverbs or a song you are currently listening to!

Igbo quote of the week: "When we gather together in the moonlit village ground it is not because of the moon. Every man can see it in his own compound. We come together because it is good for kinsmen to do so. [...] But I fear for you young people because you do not understand how strong is the bond of kinship. You do not know what it is to speak with one voice. And what is the result? An abominable religion has settled among you. A man can now leave his father and his brothers. He can curse the gods of his fathers and his ancestors, like a hunter's dog that suddenly goes mad and turns on his master. I fear for you; I fear for the clan." - Chinua Achebe

My song this week: Osadbe -_Nulu Onu Anyi


This blog is neither scientific research nor a social study; instead, it is written with much appreciation for the Igbo culture, from the subjective perspective of the author, based on personal experience. Generalizations must be read with care, as no truth is true for everyone. And most importantly, this blog is to be read with a smile and a pinch of salt (or pepper in this context).



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