Over the years due to the fact that both my parents worked for a living and had four rather unruly children to take care of, we were subjected to a varying number of strangers, living in our house and taking care of our needs. To the world they were house-helps, to us they were aunties! Mummy always insisted they be female since she had three girls and didn’t want them molested! We had been taught from an early age to scream at the top of our lungs and run as fast as we could to an adult if any man as much as tried to look at our pants much less touch us and we obeyed mummy to the letter! I’m not sure if she had a say in the looks or heights of the girls that were sent to live with us but they were always highly unattractive! Well what can I say? My mum was a smart woman… The first aunty we had was Aunty Grace. Not too sure what she was like cos I was a toddler but I figured she was nice cos she stayed with us a while. I was a little monkey as a toddler and gave her grief. Anytime we were home alone she’d put me in my play pen which I considered a tall prison and go about her duties. I first tried to gnaw at the rubber coated wooden bars but they wouldn’t budge, soon I figured out how to climb out. I was a lazy child, by my 1st birthday I absolutely refused to walk, my mom was mortified, the doctor said I was normal. I’d crawl at an alarming speed and my walker was my personal ferrari! I loved to crawl and that was all I was interested in so you can imagine Aunty Grace’s consternation when she saw me beside her. She screamed, I grinned and she screamed again. When my mum returned from work she told my mum in no uncertain terms that she thought I was possessed and she knew a prophet that could help since only spirits could have helped me out of the play pen. My mum calmed her and hatched a plan. I was put in the play pen and they pretended to leave the room but actually hid behind the door. Soon I got bored and started trying to escape, after several attempts the pigeon flew and my mum and aunty came out of hiding both screaming, one in surprise, the other in relief. Guess I wasn’t a witch afterall! The next was Aunty Ime, she was wicked and unfortunately for her, my sibs & I had just watched ‘The sounds of music’. We got her removed though I can’t seem to remember what evil prank we played on her. Next came Aunty Comfort! She was a comfort all right. Nice woman, used to buy us sweets and stuff but she gave mama attitude and got evicted! Next was Aunty Blessing! I’d just hit puberty when she came along. She always wore a huge turban and had a dress with really, really high shoulder pads and big boobs! She was a sight to behold, every time she washed clothes, she provided entertainment for the whole neighborhood with her singing…”On my wedding day, songs of glorious music reign in the air, on my wedding day, on my wedding day….” She had a thick calabar accent so it sounded more like ”On my werrin day…!” She made me her friend and confidante and told me about her dream man John! He was a big mechanic in her village and she had heard from God in her dream that he was her man! One day as we sat washing clothes, actually she washed, I sat, a strange thing happened. She was leaning over the basin of clothes when out popped her two breasts if u remember I’d mentioned earlier that they were quite huge but nothing prepared me for the big shoulder pads that fell into the soapy water. My eyes widened in amazement and all that was left of her big boobs were groundnuts that were even smaller than my 12 year old oranges! I laughed so hard I cried. ‘What would John say?’ I asked. ‘He no go know’ she responded, ‘He go toush am for dark!’ ‘What if nepa brings light?’ I teased. She looked at me with mild irritation as she rescued her sinking breasts and headed for the house…’I go off am joor!’ She returned soon after with a new pair of breasts and continued her washing and singing like nothing happened! I wonder if she ever married John. Then there was Aunty Bunmi, now even mummy agrees she goofed with this one! She had been given to us by a church member, she was a young single mother with no place to stay, desperately seeking a job. Now my mother has always been a kind-hearted woman and despite my father’s quiet objection she brought Aunty Bunmi in! We kids became baby sitters in addition to doing the house work cos she was such a frail thing and could barely carry her own body much less carry a broom! If that was the worst part we’d have been grateful but one evening as my father prepared to go out, he couldn’t find his very expensive native that my mum had bought him for his 40th birthday. He’d asked Bunmi to keep it in his drawer after she brought them from the dry-cleaners. As my mother stepped in to investigate, she was just saying maybe the girl had put it in the wrong drawer when she screamed! The other drawers were completely empty, all my father’s natives were gone, so were my mother’s expensive georges and laces. No one was spared, my shoes recently sent to me from america were gone too as well as a couple of my baffs! I cried my eyes out, Bunmi and her kid were missing too, no surprise there. My mum traced her to her brother’s house, she had sold most of the stuff and my mom’s friends beat her up, kinda felt bad for her cos her baby kept crying too like he sensed his milk source was getting whipped, guess he didn’t like whipped cream 😉 !!! Anyway we managed to put her and our stolen goods behind us and we children happily did the chores for a while. Then there was Fatima who we learnt was kidnapped from coutonou and mama gave her money to go back home, hope it wasn’t a scam! Then there was Titi who painted her long fixed nails all day and refused to do the dishes, that got her fired pretty fast! After her came sunday whom we weren’t allowed to call aunty, guess because he was a guy! Then there was Aunty Dayo who was pretty good save for the fact that she chased away every guy that came to visit us claiming they’d leave us pregnant! Then we had drivers too and l would be crazy not to mention Uncle Peter who always smelt of igbo, smoked while driving us to school, never missed a pot-hole, drove like hurricane Katrina and loved the sort of one-hit Ibo songs played on Ekeledilichukwu buses! He’s late now, R.I.P uncle Peter! Then there was uncle Ayo, the typical lagos driver. Always late, very obnoxious and he often carried girls in the car. He was fun though, miss uncle Ayo, guess he wasn’t a hit with the parents! Now we are older, drivers are not needed cos everyone can drive save for me (dont ask!) and we keep the house clean and in order without any extra help so imagine my surprise when my mum called to say she was getting a house-help! OMG!!! Abeg make una help me beg my mother! Sigh… 😦 The saga continues… Have a lovely day peeps, xoxo 😉
Aunties from hell?!!