It Lives Here Too…

It Lives Here Too…


I noticed it was living in our next door neighbour’s house before I realized it also lived in our very own house.

Even though I knew of its existence, it still came as a shock to me one evening while in Yetunde’s house; when it reared its ugly head in Yetunde’s father and I began to take a second look.

“Look, look Alade I have told you repeatedly that I do not want anything to do with any tenant that is not Yoruba, period.”

“But Sir, Itsekiri’s are like Yoruba’s.” Alade explained.

“Maybe you still don’t understand me; I may have to employ someone who does.”

Alade was Yetunde’s father’s caretaker; he took care of all Mr. Mayowa Adegun’s properties scattered across the metropolis of Lagos.

I looked myself over as my name was Oluchi it meant I was not eligible for Mr. Adegun’s house, I had to be a Yetunde or someone from Yoruba land.

I am bi-tribal (my personal coinage for a person from two tribes), my dad is Ibo from Delta State and my mum is Urhobo also from Delta State, so maybe even my bi-tribalism made me most ineligible for Mr. Adegun’s house, pure breeds or mono-tribal candidates might stand a better chance of clinching an apartment in his house.

After Mr. Adegun’s utterance the chair I sat in began to burn a hole in my skirt and I couldn’t take the heat so I got up and started for my house.

“Goodnight Sirs.” I greeted Mr. Adegun and Alade, while I beckoned on my friend Yetunde, to see me off.

“Goodnight, Oluchi my daughter, please greet my friend for me and remind him about our game of tennis tomorrow afternoon.”

“Okay Sir.” I muttered and tugged at Yetunde’s arm for her to lead the way, the Adegun’s had all types of dogs from Alsatians to German Shepherds, and I was not an avid fan of guard dogs.

Yetunde saw me off to our usual spot- my gate, as the lock on my gate clicked my thoughts went back to Mr. Adegun.

“He calls me ‘my daughter’ and in the same vein is averse to people from my tribe living in his house, sounds like insincerity to me.” I muttered.

My dad was seated outside on his lounge chair pretending to be asleep, if I passed by without greeting him, he would snarl out a ‘where are you coming from?’, so I greeted, “Daddy good evening, Yetunde’s dad said I should remind you about your game of tennis tomorrow afternoon.”

“O.K.” he grunted.

In our living room my mum was glued to a movie on Africa Magic with my Sister her co-critic of Nollywood by her side.

“Mummy, good evening. Mummy see what happened at …” ,  I made to tell of my experience at the Adegun’s house.

“Silence, let me hear what Ramsey wants to tell this girl. All these lying Casanovas, you and Amarachi had better open your eyes and watch this film.” She said while gesticulating with her hands.

I smiled to myself as I slinked away and Oluchi winked at me, we had concluded that our mum felt she had to justify why she deprived our dad of watching CNN; we were her sole concern, we had to see reality and only Nollywood could do this for us.

When I got to my bed the thoughts kept niggling at me; I had heard of tribalism, sure, but racism was big deal never tribalism so how come Yetunde’s father was averse to ‘us’. My parents were from different tribes and they loved each other, they had clearly scaled the tribal barrier or had they? This I was soon to find out. I nodded off to sleep with thoughts of a mono-tribal country in my head.

33 thoughts on “It Lives Here Too…” by Ellie (@elly)

  1. Okay…you picked quite an interesting topic to tackle…I hope this line ‘ This I was soon to find out..’ means there will be more?.. Love the flow of your story. Though I think ‘Oluchi winked at me’ should read ‘Amarachi winked at me’…Well done Elly.

    1. Got that right babe.

    2. @ Mercy thanks for the correction, i have seen to it. Glad u liked the flow, and there’s more.

  2. Nice write Elly and quite the subject matter too. All points to a continuation. Will look out for it. Well done. Was wondering what ‘it’ could be.

    1. Dunno and not sure but I’ve only heard of ‘Adigun’ and not “Adegun”. Didn’t also sound right but I might have pronounced it wrongly. Care to enlighten?

      1. Adegun exists as well, i have a friend by that name. thanks Abby…

  3. If there is a continuation, and there should be, lets see how truly detribalised Oluchi’s parents are if and when she brings home an Aliyu from the North, lol.
    Nice one. And a great theme to choose. Issue of tribe and zoning or non-zoning is killing us in this country.

    1. yes oh, zoning and non-zoning is slowly creeping into our backyards. thanks Lade.

  4. Doeas ‘it’ refer to tribalism or racism? Correct me if I am wrong but I did not see any evidence of either (yet) in Oluchi’ s home. This tale calls for a continuation. Frankly, all of us (including me) must search our hearts on how we see others outside our tribe. Good effort.

    1. yes you are right, there has not been evidence of ‘it’ yet in Oluchi’s home. it will appear in the next post. Thanks Henry.

  5. Nicely done Elly,if Nigerians had their way they would call their fellow nigerians from other tribes ”niggers”,that’s if some people haven’t started already.
    Interesting topic.

    1. Thanks Gretel, very true they would call their fellow Nigerians, ‘niggers’ – Niggerians…

  6. Ohhh what’s the difference between tribalism and racism?never bothered to check duh

  7. I’m nodding my head in appreciation

    1. thanks a bunch 2cute4u.

  8. I really liked this piece. There should be a continuation, abi, something that would justify this:

    “I noticed it was living in our next door neighbour’s house before I realized it also lived in our very own house.”

    Looking forward to it.

    1. Thanks a lo Uche, there is a continuation, watch out…

  9. Nice one…waiting for the next beat….

    1. thanks a lot treasured1.

  10. i like the afric magic piece thats what this country is turning into, its no longer our regular naija stations.

    1. glad u liked it. thanks Adeyinka.

  11. Emmanuella Nduonofit (@Emmanuella-Nduonofit)

    Elly, nice work, but ‘it’ is highly ambiguous, very unclear in your short story narration. Your narrative power isn’t that strong, Elly. Your description of places and events… I didn’t really feel them. Don’t tell us about the theme of tribalism; show us. Em, don’t forget to curb those avoidance typo errors, like you awkwardly merged two separate sentences together when punctuation marks are necessary. Good attempt! I score you 50 over 100.

    1. Thanks Emmanuella, please i would like you to point out the exact two sentences i merged, cos i have looked through and still can’t find them, waiting… thanks.

  12. Elly we’re waiting for you

    1. thanks a lot Gretel.

  13. I like the theme you chose to explore Elly.Like Emmanuella rightly said,the story could have come out stronger if you had shown a lot more than telling.Anyway,the room for improvement is the biggest room in the world.

    1. thanks a lot Lawal.

  14. Lovely theme Elle,i am liking the story and i hope there is more.
    the theme you chose is also a very interesting one.

    1. Thank you Anderson for liking the theme, and there is more.

  15. Your beginning’s quite impressive. Expecting to see a lead who’s going to go on a psychological trip. Where’re the sequels? Good story.

  16. I love this

  17. thanks for dredging up this piece to read it @innoalifa

  18. @elly always always welcome :)

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