Posted in Features

How not to make Pancakes

This is an excerpt from my cook book.

This recipe is on:
How not to make pancakes.

1. Do not make pancakes in pyjamas; they’ll be extra sweet.

Pancakes with love taste extra sweet

When we were six and four, my sister and I would wake to the whisk whisk of mother whisking eggs.

In our blue and white floral designed pyjamas, we’d wade into the kitchen looking for some sugar to lick.

Mother would plaster some of her paste on our robust cheeks, lick them off, then coo “Good morning, my sweetlings”.

We’d giggle and go on ahead to set the table for breakfast, stopping by our parent’s bedroom to kiss Daddy “Good morning”.

Those pancakes always turned out extra sweet, because we had sprinkles of love… Don’t get me wrong, I love “sweet”, but I read somewhere that it could give cavities.

2. Do not make pancakes for fun; they’ll create stronger relationships.

At ten and eight, we were finally permitted by father to make pancakes after our numerous undercover attempts.

My sister would mix the flour and eggs, whilst I buttered up the pan. In the moments that followed we’d play with the paste, using a half of it to create small snowmen, or paste men?!
Well, whatever.

We’d end up looking like lowbudget remakes of the ghosts in African magic, that look left and right before crossing the road.

As we grew older, I learnt not to underestimate these moments, because they subtly engrained in me consciousness that I could talk about my flaws to that one person who’d seen me dressed in flour countless times.

3. Do not make pancakes with an old friend; it magically makes up your break up.

In my fifth year in college, my ex roommate came visiting. She’d left in anger five months before then. Our ego wouldn’t let us heal.

The day she returned, she was stranded and needed a temporary place to stay. It was not my intention to give my forgiveness to one who never asked for it.

However, I was to make pancakes that evening, and not even all the devils in hell would stop me.

When she came in I had finished my last scoop but I needed some more, she helped me make the paste for the next batch.

The silence was thick and uncomfortable whilst we worked, so I hummed a tune. In a minute she was sobbing. Then came the apologies, the stories, and all.

By morning we were back to being best of friends.

Pancakes are charmed, I tell you.

4. Do not make pancakes for an aged person; they’ll name their first grandchild after you.

I love my maternal grandma with the love for three grannies because she is all I have left of both grandparents.

Grandma’s house is my fattening room. She meets me at the door every time and sings like a chorus “Oh my dear, look at your broom stick legs! What is your mother doing about it?” like it is a life threatening medical condition.

So when she was hospitalized for stroke, I abandoned everything and went to see her. Of course, she was pleased to see me.

Knowing how much she loved my pancakes, I made a few that morning, a few too many that she had to share with the other old lady in the ward who fell in love with them almost immediately.

The next time I visited, I ensured to pack some specially for the other lady, as well as a bunch of scented roses. I expected her gratitude, but nothing prepared me for her surprise.

Three months after my grandma was discharged, I got an invite to the naming ceremony of a baby that bore my name, “Edimaeyen” which means “beloved child”, and a note attached from the old lady in grandma’s ward.

I love to think that I’m all put together but in that moment, I wept.

5. Buy pancakes from Besties Pancake! 😊


#pancakes #bestiespancake #friendshipsunite #foodie #brandstorytelling #pancakebender #sisterhood #grannies #besties #love #families #food #cookbook #hownot-to #howto1

Posted in Biblical retellings


A biblical retelling

“I love you” he whispered. “Why?” She asked, smiling at him. “Everything and nothing, darling. I have no reason tonight” He responded, a sad smile gracing his lips. Placing a finger on her lips and shushing her mid sentence, he continued “Before you lecture me on how my love is untrue for being without reason, permit me tonight, cara mia, to love you without reason.”

Far from satiated, he watched her huff and puff and knew it was only a matter of time till she defused. So he pleaded “Just let me hold you, ma chèrie, please.”

Snuggled in his arms, facing the moonlit sky, she sighed. The cold sea breeze and even colder beach sands a harsh reminder of why they were out so late. 

The rings. 

It wearied her to think of them. 

Hosea and his ways; he’d taken the pains to get another, paying a little extra this time to ensure the design was same as the first. 

This was the fifth time they were renewing their vows and as the other four, he insisted they did it at the beach, where he first met her, on a cool evening six years ago. 

“Why Hosea?, why?!” Gomer asked, “Do you just love to brand me evil? You know I can’t help that I’m nymphomaniac, let me be, you won’t. What is it you want? I cannot be faithful to one, and…” “And I never asked you to be,” Hosea interjected, “I’m only asking that you love me, and let me love you. Stop running away from home.” 

“Hosea, I try. God, you don’t know how much. I try to stay faithful, I-I-I- I TRY. So hard, dear. But, we have to accept that this is me.” Gomer sobbed. 

“I know dear” Hosea said, pressing a kiss to the top of her head. “I don’t want you to try to stop these urges. I only want you to love me, amour; Just love me” he whispered, rocking her from side to side. 

“I thought it’d go as I grew, or when I gave birth, but I’ve had two babies, babies of which I am unsure are your seed, and now I’m pregnant with the third. Probably a bastard too” “Don’t say such words.” “No,” Gomer shrugged, pulling out of his embrace and rising to her feet. “You must hear me out, I’m at wits end.” Her voice rose an octave as she continued, “Do you never tire of coming back for me, over and again? How could you love me so? And these kids, the mementos of my sin, you love with reckless abandon. How?… ” Her flow of words cut short by choking tears, she wept. 

Rising to meet her, Hosea stroked her silky brown hair and let the tears flow down his cheeks. Words could not capture how he felt.

Reminiscing how he’d longed for this day when Gomer, the woman he loved would confess her love, he embraced her, then began to tell her once more of the love of God for his people Israel. In that moment, as Gomer renewed her vows on the beach under the moonlit sky, the host of heaven smiled down.

A new day had just begun for Israel, for slowly but surely, one man after the other the entire nation would be wooed to redemption by the message of an infidel woman loved by her husband. 

Ps: Just like Hosea, God doesn’t want us to try to change ourselves. He only wants us to love Him and let Him love us. Our love relationship will blossom, slowly but surely, till our love constrains us from the things that hamper our relationship with Him. 

You are loved, today and always, by a jealous but faithful lover. Return to his bedchamber and the comfort of His embrace. 

#life #hope #love #hosea #gomer #infidelity #adultery #biblicalretellings #retelling #modernbiblestories #storiesoflove #romance

Posted in Features

Shawarma obsession

Two weeks ago, Funmi came home with blood shot eyes and puffy cheeks. Her knock was answered by Ekanem, my younger sister, who wittingly slipped out of the room after letting her in, with the excuse that she had to see a friend in the next room. Of course I knew that was a lie. Funmi can be a drama queen and my sister is irritated by “damsels-in-distress”.

“Ifeanyi?” I asked as she walked in, and her tears confirmed my fears. Two years in an off-and-on relationship and his mother was still scheming; she needed an igbo girl for her son. Whether Ijeoma, Nnenna, Ogechi or Oluchi, she always had an igbo option for her son.

The next day was the beginning of mid semester tests. With Funmi’s swollen eyes and broken heart1 I knew the last thing on her mind would be the assessment. Talking to her in that moment was useless too. Her mind was too clogged to understand anything. For fifteen minutes, all she did was sob and infrequently murmur “I hate him…” amidst sniffles.

Turning to my wardrobe, I picked out a sleek black dress for her and brown flats. I knew I needed to take her somewhere, but where was the question. It had to be open air and have good food, but not the regular “good food”. Marina? Absolutely, not. Then I remembered Boxdfood at Marian. “Just perfect” , I thought to myself.

“Get dressed, bae, we’re going somewhere”, I told her. Convincing her to come with me was herculean, Finally she did accept on the grounds that if it wasn’t worth it, I’d forfeit the gown and shoes. She knew they were my favorites, but I was sure Boxdfood won’t disappoint.

Picking my purse and phone from the reading table, I ordered bolt and in ten minutes, we arrived.

Boxdfood is beautifully unique for it’s welcoming atmosphere, highlighted by Mr. Fego’s handsomely bearded smile. Funmi, a shawarma skeptic (she’s head over heels right now, though), was in no way interested in toppings so I ordered a beef shawarma whilst I had chevon and sausage. She reluctantly took a bite from hers’, then she smiled. I knew I’d won the wager.
She went ahead to finish hers before me and ordered another to take home.

The healthy combination of shawarma, smiles, love and friendship was all she needed that evening. On our way home, I asked if she was going to call Ifeanyi, to which she retorted “For what?” and hissed…

Mission accomplished!

I sat back, and smiled, enjoying Simi’s voice blasting from the stereo as we drove on. And of course, we aced the assessment!

©G. G. Joseph