The lead story in the book, Osimiri, Dawn and the Girls is set in Amaiyi, Igbere, Abia State Nigeria. It is a short story of an eventful day in the life of two village girls. The story exposes bits and pieces of the live and culture of the Igbere People. It was originally written for a competition advertised by Commonwealth Writers.
Mmecha and Anuli arrived at a point along the path where it broke into three. One path led to the source of the river. The water was sparkling clean here and good enough for drinking. Good enough for drinking in Amaiyi and surrounding villages. They had neither the facilities nor the knowledge to do any other kind of testing on the water so their taste buds were sufficient. It was good enough for drinking according to their test buds of everyone in Amaiyi. It could even be labelled ‘sweet’, and it was just the right temperature too, no need for a refrigerator, a dispenser or any of those fancy White Man’s stuff some of which had not even been invented. There was a saying in this part of the world: what one does not know cannot kill one. It seemed to be working!
The third path led to the end of the river. There they could have their baths hidden behind tall bushes along with other stark naked women, young and old. The men’s ‘bathroom’ was further down the river. All the soap left by the women seemed to disperse after a few minutes ride down Osimiri and it looked clean enough to bathe in again. The wonder of flowing water!
Click the thumbnail below to read the complete book.