About three times every week, I would leave school and together with my siblings we would hurry off in our school uniforms to ‘Ntingbikom’ where our mother waited for us with the afternoon meal and our clothes. We would harvest food and then trek home together.
‘Ntingbikom’ was the farmland that my family tilled tirelessly, sowing and harvesting food stuff like cassava, yams, huckleberry, groundnuts, corn and beans.
The land was about 55 square meters. Located near the river bank, it was so fertile that we farmed it year in year out.
We had those farms dotted hear and there in the Mankon Village. Some of these pieces of land were owned by my family while some were leased by richer families. While we took some of the food home for consumption, our mother took some to the market to sell so she could purchase other needs of our family of ten. That is how I grew up between the farm and school and interestingly farming is what still sustains my family and many others today.
With this experience it is difficult for me to perceive land in another way order than a veritable source of food for every hard working person who walks the earth.
Today, families which have many pieces of land are famous because they will hardly starve. Many women always look up to them for farm land since they have enough land to lease.
My mother always says ‘the ground can never fail a farmer’!
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