- The Storried Platform
WHY IGBOS TRAVEL HOME AT FESTIVE PERIODS – By Earl Okezie
Many Nigerians who are not Igbos really don’t understand why Igbos make it a must to return to their ancestral homes during festive periods. Personally, I’ve countless times asked this same question too – why the craze to go home at Christmas regardless of the cost and the hazards?
Now I know.
For the Igbos, returning home at such times provides an opportunity to reconnect with the land, traditions, and cultures they left behind in search of green pastures. In fact, I visited a family who having left their home under lock and key for a while, spent a large portion of the holidays clearing and tidying up their compound overtaken by weeds and grasses because everyone simply left home in search of bread and butter.
It’s a time to reconnect with relations and long seen friends. It’s a time parents with grown up daughters show them off for possible suitors. I was at a family function where the woman showed off her pretty daughter via deliberate introductions. Everyone knew why.
It’s a time men who have made it, take titles and show off their achievements. It’s a time marriages are contracted and the dead buried. It’s a time, owners of drinking joints and hotels make brisk sales. It’s a time masquerades and traditional musicians show off their art.
It’s a time for meetings to discuss community developments and projects. Any wonder, fund raising events are held at these times to raise funds for water, education, electricity, hospital and road projects.
My host says since the federal and many a time the state governments deliberately refuse to do anything to develop communities in the South East, the communities themselves resort to self-help.
This time, I’m not in my ancestral home for adventure sake and to standby a friend burying his mother, yet the reasons are the same.
The Igbos are great travellers who make homes where ever they find themselves, but the concept of aku ruo ulo is catching up fast because as my late dad always said – “if you want your best honours, go home because east west home is the best”.
And if you care, join me for a fresh, unadulterated palm wine in a natural ambience where the air is yet unpolluted. And if you want a feel of Igbo tradition, come witness in real time how and why the Igbos deify Kolanut or give away their daughters in marriage.
Welcome to the land of the rising sun. Happy New Year.
image credit: Hotels.ng
By Earl Okezie
Many Nigerians who are not Igbos really don’t understand why Igbos make it a must to return to their ancestral homes during festive periods. Personally, I’ve countless times asked this same question too – why the craze to go