You always see some in high heels, walking like peacocks on cloud nine, even ten if there is such. Their nails, multi coloured painted like disco light on fake eagle talons, their deep lipsticks and fake long hair going a long way to cat call in addition to their seductive dresses, branding us dirty village women. Sometimes you have to talk, beg and grovel before they buy even one cedi worth of onion. What about those who come and shout on you? Maame lɛ! Hurry up! Don’t you see the sun is burning me up? As if they have no sense to know we’re also human beings, not crocodiles who consider the sun our rivers. I also remember the “onnyɛ and otsɛ! which burned our chests as we clothed them with smiles because of customer services we needed to perfect in order to sell. And oh, there were those who came to the market to teach us hygiene. As if they will not be buried in the ground when they die. Why are you not wearing gloves? Do you even wash your pan daily? Please don’t talk when you serve! Where did you get your stuff, I hope flies did not settle on them? Me, sometimes, I’m afraid to buy from you market women o. Let me get some pure water to wash it before adding it to my things. As if they’ll be buried in the sky when they die. Yes, they were the nurses, doctors, teachers, lawyers, engineers and or maids of the most respected in society. Even the maids who act out are the worst. They acted out to make us feel like the dust they needed to get off their footwear. They say we’re in a time of a sickness whose name I can’t mention. But they forget there were people who treated us like that sickness long before the sickness came. Why won’t we show them now that the tables have turned?
This is the only time in years I don’t have to shout along the voices of other sellers, to beg customers to come and buy my vegetables. There is a cue even before I set my table. Refined people are now confined around my unrefined table, humble to a fault and you want me to sell for less? Why? Won’t their expensive wigs fit my head? Won’t their beautiful nails beautify my fingers? Won’t their beautiful clothes fit my body? Even their bizaar sunglasses (which make most look like monsters from horror movies) will make me attractive too. So the more money I get at this time, the better. And to tell the truth, it is quite intriguing to see people losing their self importance, thanks to the lessons of nature. Obviously, food is more important than flashy offices but because the ground, where we’ll all end up, is considered filthy, farmers are not respected, unless of course, they have acres and acres of farms with uncountable workers. So if farmers are not respected, who are market women who sell their stuffs? People are now seeing what is needed as compared to what is wanted.
What I sold for 5 cedis now sells for 15 cedis. I don’t care for empty and silent curses (if they worked, all politicians would be dead by now), there are those who go as far as selling the same thing for 35 cedis. It is only the silly famished stomach who will pass by a mango tree with ripe fruits by the roadside and leave it to birds to feast on. The people at the top are stealing their ways into riches, while we languish in poverty. Maybe you people have forgotten that Market women were among the richest people in Ghana before a president, now past, haunted our mothers into poverty after killing many. I believe nature has given us the top opportunity again. So you people can run your mouths like wounded flocks of guinea fowls and call for the laws of the land to kill us, but for now, you need to eat and to eat, you need to buy from us or you can go hungry in protest. After all your hunger will not anger my stomach.
The market is a place we work for profit too. To visit the bathroom, you need to pay money, to come to work you need to pay lorry fare, you also need to pay tolls to the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, and you need to pay the Kaya people to help carry your things to the market even after the exorbitant cargo fares. Need I mention the packagers and the loading fees? Everything costs money. If you’re not lucky and get yourself caught up in aaba eiii, you can sell all your stuffs to bail yourself out, that’s if you don’t lose them in panic running. But we only get few pesewas and cedis as profit and end up getting poorer by the day and you think we should sit under the hot sun and sell, without taking advantage of an opportunity to flourish? Meaning, because we don’t need certificates to sell on the market, we don’t need to be rich as foodstuff sellers? Some will delude themselves that some of us are rich, conduct your researches and see how many of us can actually afford to live average lives. We are tired, we’re tired of the hand to mouth living, dawn to dusk traveling and sore joints. We are tired, so tired of nurturing most of our children into futureless non-entities. And we’re also terrified of they ever being caught in deviancy.
Amoafowaa Sefa Cecilia © April 2020. Photo Credit: Google Pics