The news came to me all of a sudden. There was no warning, nothing in the actions of my mother in the days that had gone by that this was coming. After breakfast, she calmly said to me that we were moving back to Ghana. I stopped on my tracks. Ghana I said. Where is that? Since I didn’t want to be late for school, I took another puzzled look at my Mum and hurriedly run out of the one bedroom flat we lived in. Ghana, I kept saying to myself. Then every possible question I could think of started rushing through my mind. At school, I was eager to tell my friends of the new adventure that lay ahead me. Yet again, the questions were many, but the answers few. I tried to remember as many as I could, hoping that my mother would be in a better position than I was to provide answers to these burning question.
It was a common habit of mine to stay out late after school. Instead of going straight home from school, I would roam the streets of Balham with my friends just mucking around. I was certainly up to no good. But then, reasons for such behaviour were due to something else, which I will not get into right now. The news of our going back to Ghana certainly changed my after school habits. I quickly rushed home after school, eager to hear more from my Mother about this plan of hers – going back to Ghana. I suddenly realised that her message to me was somewhat confusing. I am sure she said we were going back to Ghana; but why “going back” I was sure that I had never been to Ghana and according to my Mother and foster parents, I was born in London. The confusion only mounted to another level as I kept trying to understand her words to me in the morning.
Just before I turned into the street on which I lived on, my best friend Raymond called to me from across the road. Joseph, he yelled, are you not coming down to the park? I turn to him, smiled and yelled back saying I was going to Ghana. His face suddenly went blank and in an attempt to get some meaning from what I had just told him, he shrugged his shoulders and run off.
I burst into our one bedroom flat. My Mum had already started laying out the table for dinner. I suddenly did not feel hungry. I wanted my Mum to tell me more about Ghana. The only thing that could satisfy my hunger at that precise moment was as much answers I could get on the numerous questions I had.
Madam Elizabeth L Lartey came to the UK on a Government Scholarship. Her aim was to study Home Economics, which she successfully did passing all her exams with flying colours. She was not the only person to receive a scholarship in those days. It was the aim of the Ghanaian Government who had not long received independence for Briton, to send their brightest students to the UK, study and return back to help build the country. After her training and exams, Madam Elizabeth Lartey met Matthew H Djamasi, who was also in the UK to study accounting. They got married and not long after Joseph Awuku Dela Victor Djamasi was born at The royal Free Hospital in Islington, London.
to be continued…………….