By Adwo Mawufemor
I am not a good writer but I just have the feeling that I need to write down something to celebrate my dad. This is just a warning so you do not get disappointed after reading.
Mr. Peter Kwaku Prosper Anani aka Stone or ekpes3s3 (meaning hard stone) is my dad. He got the name ‘stone’ from his students who claim he is hard and tough. I always laugh when I hear them say that because I do not see him that way. But I can’t deny the fact that he can be tough sometimes. He hasn’t lashed us before except for the last born, Florence, who, I must confess, is a hard nut to crack.
He is soooo sweet. I guess sweet is not appropriate to be used for a man right??!!! But I just don’t know what other word to use.
Any time my father calls, my roommates know he is the one because of the smile on my face and our introductory pleasantries and pet accusations.
Bear in mind that all our telephone conversations are in standard British English, the kind Churchill and Thatcher and co. speak. Loool
Dad: how are you?
Me: good. U?
Together: gut gut gut be-au-tiful be-au-tiful be-au-tiful
Unlike me, he is a very good cook. Because of his work, he lives at Akosombo and any time I go to visit him, I sleep like a log. He wakes me up only to say, “Wake up lazy girl. I have fried some egg and heated some water and boiled some rice. Beverage for the morning and rice for the afternoon. Am off to work”. Then, I simply go back to sleep with a big grin on my face. I remember when he used to prepare stew and send it to me through his teacher who is studies for a degree through the distance education model at the University of Ghana. Then, Felicity and I would be rich in terms of food for the week. Mind you, the stew always came with bread, “abolo”, “one-man-thousand,” fried fish and fante kenkey.
My dad is a strong-hearted man to have lived with my mum all these years. (no offence ooo) but trust me, my mum is tough. She is the man in the house and my dad is the woman. Any time he comes from work and sees us sober the first question will be, it’s your mum again right?” When my dad talks to us with his eyes, my mum does so with her hands and MOUTH. So we are always glad to have him at home and my mum away.
Annoyingly, he always forgot our birthdates and or birthdays. If you think that is unforgivable for a dad, please excuse him. He doesn’t remember his either!
Me: Efo/ Fo K)kuu (thats how I jokingly call him sometimes)
Dad: Uhuuuuh (not waiting for us to have our usual introductory greetings. I am filling a form and they are asking for your dates of birth—yours, Florence’s and Belinda’s.
Me: Aaarrrhhh Daaa how can you forget? Any time you are filling a form you have to call and ask me.
Dad: Ooohh la I am in a hurry. Tell me.
Me: Ok 12th March, 1990
Dad: Take your time. 12th what?
Dad: Uhuh? 19 what?
Dad: Heeeeeer are you sure?
Dad: Hahahahah. Ok sorry. What about Belinda and Florence?
Me: Belinda is an August born and Florence is June but I have forgotten the dates
Dad: How can u?
Me: (shocked at why he could forget it himself)
Dad: bye bye!!
Me: Oh Daa…wait
Then line drops……..
Even when I call him on his birthday, he will say “Belinda was the one who called me before I remembered oooo” (Belinda is sooo annoying. She is always the first to call both parents on their birthdays. I never beat her to it)
He is a hardworking teacher. He is an excellent mathematician but unfortunately none of his children is. He has taught me to be punctual and work hard in every corner I find myself. He is never late for work or any programme thus when we are to go somewhere with him, he makes sure we start preparing an hour before him. He won the Best Teacher Award in the Asuogyaman District for four consecutive times and I think they grew tired of him so decided to give it to other people. He is loved by his staff (only the hardworking staff. The lazy ones hate him to the core) and students. In March this year, he was transferred to head another school and I witnessed how some staff and students of the school wept. Surprisingly, they organized a send-off party and a thanksgiving service for him (the first ever to be organized by the school). I was soo proud of him. I recall when I went on my usual weekend visits and he came to see me off at the station. When the car moved, a woman tapped me from behind and when I turned, she asked me if Mr. Anani was my dad. When I responded in the affirmative, she said, “He is a hardworking teacher and I like him”. I left shortly after, my head beaming with pride.
I don’t need to bore you with my dad but all I can say is I love him and I pray for long life for him to enjoy the fruits of his labour. He once told me that he has no house, car, land or business to bequeath to me. All he had for me was education. I have always cherished that immensely.
It’s another Fathers’ Day and I have decided to ‘publish’- If that is what this is- a poem I wrote for on Thursday, January 17th 2012, between the hours of 9am and 1:30pm.
This poem might not be as good as, Milton’s, Shakespeare’s or Awoonor’s but I think I love it because it came right down the gulf of my heart. loool
Not all fathers are bad or irresponsible, you know??!! There are good ones out there.
Mothers get the fame,
And Fathers bear the shame.
Mothers are always said to go through the pain
And Fathers are always said to be insane.
But who said some Fathers do not treasure
The Children, they have in this world feature?
They worry about them that their blood pressure,
Doctors cannot measure.
My Dad is that Father,
Who acts like a Mother.
On the table he provides butter
So the Children do not worry over any matter.
I will not pretend he is an Angel.
He can be firm like jell.
He will not even give us a space of gill.
And he sometimes drinks something I hate which is gin.
But I love him anyways!!
Because I love you is all he says.
I will provide for you all my days,
So I will be happy when death I face.
He just did not donate his sperms.
Quality time for us he spares
And makes sure he spends
His money on his ‘pets’.
I acknowledge all his efforts
And I promise to make him proud.