An African City: S2E6- The ISMs


E6 Cupcake Boutique Sign

The girls meet up to talk at The Cupcake Boutique (this place is on my go to list of spots in Accra). Sade walks in upset someone called her entitled (umm but you are boo and your friends are too). The girls don’t react to her statement. Sade repeats herself. The girls tell Sade she is entitled. Sade takes offence to their statement saying  it isn’t true.

E6 Sade entitled_2

Zainab asks Sade how she got her place and she replies with “by being amazing”. Zainab asks her about Kwame to which Sade explains she got her place from being amazing, dating Kwame and knowing how to negotiate. Ngozi  tells Sade she cant believe Kwame agreed to buy her a house. Sade explains the house is his way to get her to stop from wanting a baby. Zainab tells Sade  she knows she can afford her own deposit on a house. Sade says she could pay for her place but she knows her beauty will soon depreciate so she is getting all she can now. Zainab tells her she is setting back feminism. Sade disagrees and says she is equal to any man politically, socially and economically but also is a capitalist that will take advantage of any opportunity including resources from the opposite sex.

E6 Sade_feminism_cupcake

Zainab tells Sade  she doesn’t make sense and should buy her own stuff so she controls her own stuff. She says if men buy her stuff they control her. Sade tells Zainab she controls everything. Sade tells Zainab  she doesn’t understand why feminism means having to buy things on your own. She tells Zainab to stop policing her feminism (She really has a point there. Cant tell the woman how to live). Zainab says  she is policing her feminism because a man is not a financial plan. Sade says Kwame just gave her $25,000 with the promise of more and that sounds like a financial plan to her. Sade tells Zainab  she feels her idea of feminism is very black and white while hers is grey.

E6 Ngozi_nipples_cupcake

Nana Yaa looks over at Ngozi and sees her nipples are showing through her top. She asks Ngozi what is going on. Ngozi is so embarrassed. The girls tell her to calm down and that it’s not that serious. She uses her clutch to hide her chest. Ngozi tells the girls she doesn’t know why her nipples are behaving like that and it happens no matter where she is even if there is no A/C.

E6 Zainab_cant sleep

That night Zainab is trying to sleep when her neighbour’s generator goes off (that thing sounded like construction season in Toronto). Her neigbour’s generator keeps her up all night.

E6 Makena Stephan_meet aunt

Makena takes Stephan to meet her aunt Monica. Aunt Monica asks Stephan his last name. Stephan tells her his last name is Turkson. She asks if he is Fanti. She goes on to ask who his parents are (such  a typical older GH person question) and if he is related to the Turkson’s of Cape Coast. He explains to her  he is the from the States, Washington D.C. to be exact. Makena tells her aunt that she had already told her that Stephan was American. Aunt Monica says she forgot (she probably thought he was African but lived in America). Aunt Monica asks Stephan how he likes Accra and invites him to have tea next week with her and her husband.

E6 Makena Stephan_master

The house help Kofi comes into the room to give Aunt Monica a letter. He tells her “Madam, Mr. Appiah said I should give this to Master”. The look on Stephan’s face is one of shock and confusion. Aunt Monica asks to be excused. Once gone, Stephan asks Makena if Kofi just called her uncle Master (this is something you will hear in Ghana). Makena is not able to give him an answer. Stephan is shocked and says he didn’t know that they were still in colonial times. Makena looks very uncomfortable.

E6 Ngozi_covers up

Ngozi is at church when her nipples start to show through her top. She is so embarrassed she hides her nipples behind her Bible.

E6 Nana Yaa Edem_condom

Nana Yaa’s in bed with Edem. She reaches over for a condom to give him and he asks her if they need to use it. Nana Yaa says yes (Just a bit confused. They have had sex before were they not using protection before why is that even a question at this point?) He tells her  he will pull out. She laughs (I did too). He tells her he is serious. Nana Yaa tells him she is serious about condoms. He pleads that they should do it this one time with out one. She says no. He tells her that he wants to feel her. He starts kissing her belly button and goes a bit lower saying he wants to feel all of her. He takes the condom out of her hand (Naaww. Nope. I don’t care. I would say no. I would much rather be safe).

E6 second meet up

The girls meet up again to talk. Ngozi tells Zainab she looks exhausted. Zainab says she is and talks about the country relying solely on the Akosombo dam for energy and how her neighbours need to put a silencer on their generator so she can sleep. Nana Yaa tells Zainab that her dad said load shedding (which causes there to be power outages) will soon be a thing of the past.

E6 Zainab tired_meet up

Zainab complains she has a lot of marketing material to read and cant keep her eyes open. Ngozi asks if the energy crisis is because of a gas strike in Nigeria. Zainab tells her  the newspapers say it’s because of a broken pipe. Makena is shocked that Zainab’s neighbours don’t have a silent gen set. Nana Yaa asks Zainab if she has ear plugs. Zainab says the sound follows her wherever she goes. She can even hear the generator while sitting with them. Ngozi tells her to speak to her neighbour about the generator.

E6 Nana Yaa tells the girls

Sade interrupts to ask why their conversations have gone from sex to power outage crisis. Nana Yaa tells the girls that her and Edem used the pull out method. The girls look at her shocked and confused. Makena is stunned since Nana Yaa is a stickler for using condoms. Nana Yaa giggles and says it was so good. Sade looks at her astonished and tells her that the pull out method is stupid (I agree). Nana Yaa tells the girls that her and Edem have both been recently tested. Zainab asks Nana Yaa about pregnancy since she thought they both weren’t ready to have babies.

E6 Sade is confused with Nana YaaE6 Sade upset with Nana Yaa

Nana Yaa begins to explain herself when Sade yells at her that she is behaving like she is in high school.  Makena says her cousin used the pull out method and gave birth last week. Nana Yaa explains that she has been tracking her cycle on her calendar. Sade is confused and asks Nana Yaa who she is cuz she doesn’t recognize her anymore-clearly this is not her friend. This whole conversation is killing Sade (obvisously Edem has her hypnotized that she cant think straight). While sitting with the girls  nipples start showing through her shirt and she is embarrassed once again.

At church the next day the same thing happens to Ngozi that she has to hide behind her bible once again. It even happens at work during a meeting so she uses her locks to hide her nipples. While ridding her bike at night she  stopped for coconut water and her nipples did the same thing making her embarrassed when a male jogger passes by.

E6 Ngozi_doctor 1

Ngozi decides to see her doctor. At her doctor’s office she asks if this could be a sign of cancer (she is so paranoid). The doctor tells her no. She tells Ngozi that she is 26 and still a virgin and her body is trying to tell her it’s time for sex (yeah I dunno) Ngozi tells the doctor that her body is wrong and that  it is up to her and her mind to protect her body.

E6 Ngozi_doctor2

The doctor says Ngozi is trying to avoid breaking her hymen and probably getting a broken heart in the process. She tells her it is all a part of adulthood and she should embrace it. (umm is your doctor suppose you like this?). Ngozi tells the doctor that her heart and hymen are just fine.

Zainab decides to take Ngozi’s advice and talk to her neighbour. That evening she sees their car rolling up to the gate and runs up to the car to talk to her neighbour Dr. Baffour. She tells him that his generator is very noise and if he could turn it off at a certain time during the night (how is that possible?). The doctor is upset and asks her if he comes over to her house to tell her what to do with her generator. Zainab replies that her generator has a silencer. Dr. Baffour continues to talk about returnees like her who come home, speak in a fake accent with their noses in the air thinking they are better than everyone else. Zainab takes offense to his comments and tell him her accent is not fake, she explains that her father is Ghanaian and her mother is Sierra Leonean and she was raised in Atlanta. She tries to continue to argue with Dr. Baffour but he rolls up his window and drives off.

E6 Zainab takes off silencer

The following night Dr. Baffour moves his generator to the front of his house which is also closer to Zainab’s bedroom. Zainab decides to remove the silencer on her gen set and make it so noisy that Dr. Baffour gives up.

E6 Sade on date

Sade goes out on a date with Gregory whom she met on a flight from London. While talking and getting to know each other, Gregory bites into his meal and says the salmon is not cooked enough. Sade tells him good salmon shouldn’t be over cooked. He says his salmon wasn’t prepared the way they make it in London. Gregory calls the waiter over and tells him he is paying too much money to have his meal undercooked. The waiter explains that is how the chef prepares the salmon. Gregory tells him to call a manager since he doesn’t understand what he is saying. Sade looks horrified watching this whole transaction take place.

E6 Nana Yaa Edem_cupE6 Nana Yaa Edem_cup2

Nana Yaa is with Edem in her bed and trying to make sure that he will pull out. He assures her that he will. She tells him to pull out but not on her stomach because last time it was too sticky. He says he will pull out on the bed. Nana Yaa screams bloody murder at Edem. She tells him that her sheets are Ralph Lauren. Edem tells Nana Yaa that she is not making any sense and where should he pull out? He jokingly suggests a cup but Nana Yaa tells him that is a great idea and he should go to the kitchen and get a cup. Edem comes back with a mug and Nana Yaa yells at him to go back to the kitchen and get a disposable cup. Edem returns to the bedroom with the disposable cup. He gets back into bed but now the mood has passed and he’s not really rising to the occasion. (Why is Nana Yaa like that?)

E6 girls clean gutters

The following day the girls meet up to clean gutters with Nana Yaa’s cousin Adoma. Makena asks why they have to clean gutter?  Sade explains to her  they are entitled and must give back (that Gregory situation clearly shook her up). Zainab says that Returnee Saviour Complex is the new thing replacing the White Saviour Complex. Adoma says returnees should give back to Ghana.

E6 Adoma cleans up

Zainab says all Ghanaians should give back and why is there such an emphasis on returnees. Sade asks why cleaning the gutters is giving back. Adoma tells her that it helps stop the spread of cholera. Adoma has started an organization called Go Green Ghana that is dedicated to helping clean up the country and hopes Ngozi will volunteer to be part of the Accra team.

E6 girls clean gutters2

Adoma tells the girls that her boyfriend Akwasi is coming to see her family next weekend to perform the knocking ceremony (basically this an engagement ceremony to let everyone know you are about to be married). Ngozi is shocked to hear Adoma is getting married since she just got to Ghana and asks how she did it. Adoma tells Ngozi that her and the girls wont ever get married because they are too lost from the ideals of culture and tradition. She says the only one with a chance is Makena. Makena tells the girls that Stephan hates that Kofi calls her uncle Master. Zainab says Stephan is making a valid point. Nana Yaa asks Makena if she has talked to him about the issue. Makena says she is afraid to bring the issue up and sound politically incorrect.

E6 Ngozi sad about marriage

Ngozi interrupts to ask Adoma why she thinks she will never get married. Adoma replies in twi which leads Ngozi to get upset and explain that she is not good at learning languages. Adoma tells her that strong African men want strong African women who don’t only communicate in the white mans language (that’s bs).

E6 Ngozi chases joggerE6 Ngozi chases jogger2

That evening Ngozi is out biking and stops for coconut water. She sees the same jogger that she sees every night and decides to run after him and introduce herself.


E6 Makena Stephan lunch with family

Makena and Stephan are having a meal with her aunt and uncle. Her uncle calls for Kofi and sends him to do an errand before leaving the room Kofi says once again “ok Master”. Makena’s uncle tells Stephan that he has heard about his dislike for the word master. Stephan tells him that he is uncomfortable with the word.

E6 Makena Stephan lunch with family2

Makena’s uncle tells Stephan that he went to school in the US and was there at the March on Washington. He goes on to tell Stephan that MLK spent time in Ghana and that the Civil Rights Movement was propelled by the African Liberation Movement. He continues to say  cultures learn from one another and another culture must never dictate. Culture has context and Master in Ghana simply means respect. Stephan says he never thought of it like that. Makena’s uncle apologizes for Stephan feeling uncomfortable  but tells him it is no concern of his.

E6 Zainab

Zainab was at home trying to get work done but she was distracted by Dr. Baffour’s generator. ECG hadn’t turned off the power so she couldn’t understand why his generator was on. She felt he left it on to spite her.

E6 Zainab shakes gateE6 Zainab_Charles meet

Zainab decides to go outside to talk to him. She is shaking and kicking his gate looking to get someone’s attention. She sees a car approach and thinks it must be Dr. Baffour. She knocks on the window only to find out it is not Dr. Baffour but his son Charles. Zainab likes what she sees and forgets about the generator.

E6 Nana Yaa Edem_condom2

Nana Yaa is in bed with Edem and tells him that she is worried about pre-ejaculation because she is near the ovulation point in her cycle. Edem is frustrated and says they should go back to using condoms (they should have never stopped using them).

E6 Ngozi_Babatune

Ngozi goes on a date with the jogger she introduced herself to. His name is Babatunde, he is an atheist, a smoker, a meat eater and very secretive about how he makes his money. Ngozi never goes out with him again but she is proud of herself for taking the initiative to ask him out and following that initial feeling of attraction she had for him. Her nipples stop bothering her after their date.

E6 Makena Stephan make up

Stephan and Makena are at work when Stephan enters her office. They apologize to each other over the “master” issue. Makena assures Stephan when they have their own home and family the word master will be banned. He agrees and says in their home they will break away form elitism and classim by not having servants and doing all the cooking and cleaning themselves. Makena looks terrified. She probably doesn’t want to have to cook and clean.


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