For Danielle’s birthday, Gina decided to prepare us all groundnut stew and banku. The soup had a healthy layer of oil on top, and a generous helping of fish below it. It might have gone purposely unnoticed except for the eyeballs, with their stoic glazed gaze, and the bones poking up through the orange redness. The banku itself (I noticed upon closer look) was abominable without the soup. Banku has the constancy of play dough; and the taste, sadly, is not much better. The very look of it was unsettling. It was solid but slimy. Soft but grainy. It had a flavor of rotten milk. It had a color like puke. I hated the way I had to fondle it before shoving it down my throat, taking care not to chew before swallowing. It looked like my death certificate, and perhaps it was a divine revelation that I could never serve a mission.
But alas, providence was not so cruel, and since it was during the Ghana match of the World Cup, Rachel Morris, the saint she is, took a few of our bowls, ran out back, and chucked the meal over the fence without detection.
Needless to say, I assured all of my group members that if anyone breathes a word about my birthday next month, there would be serious consequences.