THINGS THAT WILL MAKE YOU KNOW YOU ARE IN KUMASI.
GARDEN CITY, OSEIKROM, SIANO
It used to be called the Garden City. I just overheard someone saying it has now metamorphosed into Garbage CITY. He is lucky it was not heard. Kumasi is no doubt a wonderful city with wonderful people and an amazing lifestyle. Asante Twi is the language that rules over here. It is spoken everywhere; in the banking halls, in schools and especially on KNUST campus. KUMASI has managed to create its own unique atmosphere. When you arrive and stay in Kumasi for a week without noticing any of these things, then you are lost. You might be in Mafe-Kumasi then.
- Kumasi is the citadel of the Asante kingdom and the King resides right here with so much reverence and adoration. The Manhyia palace is one of the most visited tourist centres in the city. One unique thing however is how almost everyone in this city proclaims to be tied to the umbilical cord of the Asantehene. Most people you meet especially in Bantama, Ashtown and Krofom (suburbs of Kumasi) will brag to you that they are ‘Otekorkorso Naana’ (grandchild of He who sits on the golden stool). If you are not careful, you can easily believe them because they say it with so much confidence and pride. It is only in Kumasi where Burkinabes even claim to be grandchildren of the Asantehene.
- Every evening is a fufu bazaar. From 5pm, the whole city erupts into rhythmic pounding of fufu. The pestles go up into the air and come down, well lubricated with sweat and at times saliva. It makes for a nice aerial view.
- Kumasi people are so humble and great ass kissers (I mean praise singers, please). Here, people are addressed as CHIEF, NANA, OHEMAA (princess), BOSS, AHUOFE (Beauty). It is so amazing how someone can easily sing your praises and pour unimaginable appellation on you even when he does not know you, all in the quest to woo you to buy a second-hand underwear.
- If you are not told, you will never guess once that residents of Kumasi are perhaps the most religious people in Ghana. After 10pm, do not expect to put on a radio set and get anything other than loud and ear-drum tearing screams blurting out of your set. It is either an all night church service or a pastor preaching. It is amazing the kind of things most of them preach and talk about. Their actions even make it difficult to know the real once among them. Some of them are very good at identifying callers who wear red panties. Some also ask their ardent listeners to bring all kinds of things ranging from lemon to cattle for healing. That is Kumasi for you.
- KUMASI ASANTE KOTOKO is not just a football club here. It is more than a deity. It is the very heartbeat of Kumasi. A win for the team in a big match especially against arch rivals, Hearts of Oak, is a call for partying. A lose demands mourning and a hungry strike. However the hunger strike is only against the evening’s fufu. Of late, Kotoko doesn’t give us the ticket for our parties because of a string of poor performances.
- Another deity worshiped by most people of Kumasi a lot is the New Patriotic Party (NPP). Unlike Florida, where the Republicans can be disappointed, the previous Garden city is a sure banker (not Lotto) for the NPP. There is a saying here that even if you put a goat on the ticket of the NPP in a political contest in Kumasi, it will win. The love and support for the party is so strong that for the early part of 2009, you will think Nana Akuffo Addo was the president of Kumasi. When you see grown women clad in party paraphernalia in the heat of the sun when there seems to be no political activity, you are in Kumasi.
- Stop a trotro (commercial vehicle) right on KNUST campus (TECH) and ask the conductor (Mate) where they are heading towards. He will open his very nice smelling mouth and tell you ‘TECH’. Then you begin to wonder if you are on Legon or UCC campus. Do not be shocked. This is Kumasi.
- There are very few things or persons we fear over here in our lovely city. We cross the road with no regards for the vehicles at all. They can be TICO or articulator trucks. We care less. However, let us see the sign of rain and hell will break loose. We will exhibit our athletic skills. When it starts to rain in the middle of the day, one might think the battle of Armageddon just began.
- On Saturdays, it is strictly funerals and nothing else. Try organizing a programme on Saturday and you will attend it yourself. We love funerals a lot. I mean we are obsessed with them and we do them with flamboyance. When you wake up on Saturday morning and all you hear is the siren of hearse and all you see is people clad in mourning clothes, then you are welcome to the city nicknamed OSEIKROM.
- Our only plobrem (I mean ‘problem’) in Kumasi is our Rs and our Ls. But is it our fault. When a very beautiful lady approaches you, opens her buccal cavity (mouth) wide and says ‘Bleda, Elic sent me to buy blead flom you’, you must know that she was born and ‘bled’ in the Garden city. During the just ended NDC congress, when the Brong Ahafo Regional party chairman stood to speak, I thought they had change the venue to Kumasi. ‘Engrish’ be what.
Kumasi is a place to be. The people are nice and welcoming. The language is easy to learn. The cost of living is very affordable. We have the best University in Ghana and we have the only natural lake around. One thing about us is we brag a lot. THIS IS OSEIKROM. WE ARE NUMBER ONE.