Growing up, I had for whatever reason convinced myself that my favorite food was fried rice and chicken. Mostly because every other child said so too. We felt so cool saying so, even those who only had this delicacy on extremely important occasions.
Along the lines of discovering myself, I discarded the cliché “My favorite food is fried rice and chicken” and found out that my taste buds are intensely aroused by the taste of anything plantain. The aroma of any plantain dish is enough to do the trick. I love plantain! It is almost the way to my heart.
My number one plantain dish is Abom (Ampesi with kontomire or garden egg stew made in an earthen ware bowl). Mother knows this and mostly made it after getting under my skin and driving me nuts. It almost always worked.
Preceding Abom (Whatever number comes before 1) is plantain chips. Plantain chips is a priority in my life. So when earlier this year, there was a shortage of plantain, I felt like I had lost a part of myself. I was simply unhappy. Then after months of not sighting even a finger of plantain, I remember smiling sheepishly from the backseat of a Lapaz-bound trotro, on my way to Mallam, but stuck in traffic at Dzorwulu junction.
The reason for the smile, plantain chips. It had been nearly two months since I had seen any. I really love plantain chips. I cannot see some and not make a purchase, at least three packs.
Now the reason why this piece is entitled ‘VIP on Hell’s List’ is relation to my unrivalled affection for plantain, especially, plantain chips. I usually buy it in traffic and before I do, I always ask the sellers “3y3 fresh?” (Is it fresh). The response always is in the affirmative, coupled with vigorous assuring nods. These nods always give me so much hope and makes me so excited as I open up the pack of plantain chips to munch on. And eleven out of ten times, it’s never fresh!!!
As many times as this has happened, I always tend to believe the next seller when she tells me “3y3 fresh” (It is fresh), when it actually isn’t.
I have had enough of these sellers preying on my vulnerability for their financial gains. It is just not fair. Too many lies. They seem to forget that telling lies is a sin and all liars will go to hell. I leave them to God and on That Day, they shall be among the first occupants of that bottomless pit.