- Auntie Kyeiwaa
This aunt is the ɔdendene mu ɔdendene (tr: toughest of the tough). She does not kyele (tr: tolerate) nonsense. She will tell you her mind. She’s either married to some quiet passive man or is one of the rare breeds who have managed to remain unmarried by choice and yet no one can muster the gumption to upbraid her. People secretly think it is because of her ɔdenden ways that she never got married. After all which man could handle such a woman? They pity her but they keep their opinions to themselves because Auntie Kyeiwaa is fire! She has power in the family because when it comes to taking responsibility, funeral contributions, and other family contributions, she has saved everyone’s ass time and time again.
- Uncle Samo
This Papa Samo (tr: person who travels abroad and does not visit his family in many years) is the uncle that everyone talks about but you don’t remember. He went to
- Father’s Friend Turned Uncle
This man is not related to you by blood or marriage but when he visits, he acts like he is your father’s relative and has as much authority as your dad. He requests special meals. He never calls your father by his real name. Instead he calls him Ogyam, BKC, or some other nickname. This man likes to send the children in the house on errands, but he never brings any gifts. He’s the kind of man who tempts children to spit in water he requests. He’s really annoying, and everyone looks forward to his departure.
- The Uncle Who Doesn’t Give a Whit About You
This uncle visits only to see the adults. He pretends you do not exist. He takes absolutely no interest in your affairs. When he calls the adults, he does not ask of you or speak with you. You hear that it is your parents who put him through school but he really couldn’t care a whit about you. You would not dream of spending your holidays with him even though your parents always suggest it.
- The Grandmother You Like
This grandmother is to die for. She makes the best meals, dotes on you and tells corny stories about the good times when you were a precocious little kid. She always brings goodies when she visits and sometimes she even gives you money, or jewellery, or other things you actually want and treasure because they remind you of her. In the best case, you want to be like her when you grow up.
- The Cousin You Have Nothing in Common With
You’re supposed to be cousins. Except he’s actually your nephew, but he’s your age and your interactions leave much to be desired. You wish the best for him but you wonder if you have to be friends by force just because your parents think “cousins” ought to bond. This “body arrangement” (tr: Ghanaian slang for trying too hard to be friends) is not working and you wish you’d both just accept that you may be related but you’re not tight and that’s okay.
- The Adorable Aunt
This aunt is your role model. She makes time for you. She used to write to you and visit you when you were in secondary school and she even emails you now. You know you’re welcome at her house at anytime and you can eat whatever is in her fridge. She does not throw money at you but she buys you thoughtful gifts and will call you to check up on you. You actually enjoy talking to her because she reasons with you and understands you. When she travels abroad, she always brings you stuff you want, like nikes or books, or clothes from the gap. You remember the one hip fubu jeans you used to wear all the time for records night in high school? Yep, she bought it:) as opposed the obroni wawu(tr: second hand clothing) that you always had to try so hard to disguise as "store reject" or ehm, from a boutique. Your adorable aunt hugs you, and always seems so pleased to see you. She’s the aunt that you know you’d take a break from work to nurse if she ever got sick. She’s everything that family out to be and makes up for the jackasses.
- The Cool Uncle
You’re glad your aunt married this man because he’s a terrific guy. He knows so much about so many things and he makes time to help you out, whether it’s tutoring you in Math, helping you make a budget for a personal project, listening to your relationship problems, or driving you to your boyfriend’s house at 10 pm just so you can see him one last time before he leaves the country. He may want you to take his advice whenever you ask his opinion, but you can live with his faults. No one’s perfect, right?
I know it is simplistic to describe our family members as I have but you go ahead and fill in what I've left out. Is the cool uncle also the one with the foul breath, or the adorable aunt also the one who wears the most embarassingly out-of-date weaves? Is your favorite aunt a mix of Auntie Kyeiwaa and "the adorable aunt", or something else entirely? What are your relatives like?