I was a little boy when my dad decided to bring us home for the first time. For a boy of 10 years old, it was like a dream to see the Lokoja and Kogi that was on everyone's lips. At first the thought of how the size of the rumored Ajaokuta bridge was and then the excitement of seeing the confluence of River Niger and River Benue was enough for me to fly if I could.
A day before the exact day we were set to travel down, my dad had said we should have a special prayer. A kind of protection that we needed since we were going home for the first time. My mother had always talked about how the our tribes still practices Juju and idolatry. A norm which had continuously ate deep into the lives of most kogites.
It will be completely without sense to talk about how the journey was. When we got to Gwagwalada, my mom told us we had reached the closest town to Kogi state. Then few minutes later, there was a sign post signaling our first entrance into kogi stage.
Places like Ohono and the rest made me feel like I was going into another world. I hid my disappointment and we continued until we reached Lokoja. The first sight were dirt and leathers littered almost everywhere. Big lorries and heavy vehicles blocked almost every part of the road and black or condemned oil liter the earth.
Is this the state capital? I asked as though I were blind. My mom laughed off the question as dad drove as though he had fought with someone over the course journey.
The street of the state capital had little or no streets light and the roads filled with gully and pot holes. Out of nowhere my dad bursted out in anger. "Imagine what they call a state capital? Just imagine?" He roared and we laughed at him.
When we finally got into our village, It was like we had just entered another planets. Everyone rushed us and the greetings like aaah awaaa aaaa aagba knew no bound. It would continue until one person put a pause to it.
An elderly woman came towards us and shouted "oh my children has turned to Hausa ooo" I had wanted to laugh but my mum would always had her eyes on us. She was making sure no one misbehave through her eye contact.
Around every corner of the large compound, they were bottles buried and the head were tied using a feather and a black or red cloth or both.
Since we made pur journey two days journey we arrived at our village that day around 2 pm when they were preparing for afternoon prayers. Where we slept at Lokoja was nicer compare to the houses we saw at the village.
It was surprising then to see idolators holding the kettle going for prayer like the Muslims too. It was like a norm.
Kogi state is another world on its own. Stay tune as you follow me for more updates on what really happened afterwards. Do not forget to like and share this post.
You will get to see how disappointed I felt coming to Kogi state for the first time
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