Author’s note: This is fiction. The narrator is a figment of my imagination, not me.
Fashion, these days, is more like a lifestyle than a statement. And although I am seventeen, almost legally an adult, there are females, both older and younger than me who wear so many uncomfortable things, for the sake do looking good. Sometimes, it would be worth it, I agreed because they’d look stunning even when they couldn’t, breathe, and the tightness in their midsections do help minimise their food intake, which is a great thing for people who were getting fat anyway.
So I enjoy my walks on the street. I get to observe people in their very own self-inflicted discomfort, which is amusing, just like the big joke called life.
What I see: the girls wearing bodycons so tight that they have to suck their stomachs in as dad as to look concave; the girls with the skirts so tight that they have to pull their shirt down one side then the other, after every step; those people wearing strapless clothes that have to be pulled up every minute. But my favourite thing to observe is the women in high heels.
A woman walks robotically, trying to make sure that after every step, she won’t fall. Paranoia affects her balance, and then she wobbles. She pauses, then looks around furtively, making sure nobody noticed. Then she passes by, trying to look more self-assured, like it never happened, and also because she still feels sexy. It’s a good feeling. All around me, on certain days are the mechanical footsteps and the never-ending chorus of kro-chia-kro-chia, as the stiletto heels touch the cement pavement. But I…I choose a different path.
I’m in my Levi denims, with a black Calvin Klein shirt on top. My earrings are gold-plated and dangly, as are the numerous bracelets I wear on my wrists, which jingle each time I move them. When I have my braids, they’re in an elegant updo. When I’m rocking my weave, it cascades like a waterfall on my shoulders. My style is classic.
But when I’m roaming the streets of Accra, no outfit of mine is ever complete without my one signature: my favourite, turquoise pair or chalewote. I am not just designer classic. I am the local classic.
P.S. Ghana has no giraffes, in case any foreign people are reading this blog. And to whoever manages Delta Airlines’ twitter account: w’ayɛ adeɛ paa. Bɔ wo’nsam.